Camera Traps – October 2023 accrued 54-cassowaries, 27-dingoes and 484-feral pigs.  Against the cumulative monthly average, cassowary numbers fell by 50%, as did dingo numbers by 34%, whereas feral-pig numbers soared by 312%.  Against October 2022, cassowary sightings rose by 22%, dingo numbers increased by 12.5%, whilst did feral-pigs exploded by 537%.

Image highlights from Camera Traps – October 2023

Cassowary capers …

Crinkle-cut & his new brood:  Tojah, Tulli & TK!

Manu, Leonardo & Michelangelo

Leonardo & Michelangelo taking a selfie

Rare sighting …

… Bennett’s Tree-kangaroo

Myrtle Rust

A foreboding new threat to the world’s longest surviving rainforest

Myrtle rust (Austropuccinia psidii) is a fungal disease that affects plants of the Myrtaceae family. First detected in Australia in 2010, Myrtle rust is now widespread in the Wet Tropics, where warm, humid conditions are ideal for germination. Large numbers of rainforest plant species, with potential to affect up to 75% of vegetation, including bush-tucker species, and the animals (like insects, birds, cassowaries, and gliders) that depend on them.

Myrtle rust attacks young, soft, actively-growing leaves, shoot tips and young stems, as well as fruits and flower parts of susceptible plants. The first signs of rust infection are tiny raised spots or pustules. After a few days, the pustules erupt into distinctive, fluffy-looking, egg-yolk yellow spores. Left untreated, the disease can cause deformed leaves, heavy defoliation of branches, dieback, stunted growth and even plant death.

The Gondwanan rainforest depicted within this long-term Daintree Rainforest Camera Trap project, is rich with Myrtaceae, containing 25-species including Yellow Penda – Ristantia pachysperma and Golden Penda – Xanthostemon chrysanthus and one of the rarest plant species in the world – Xanthostemon formosum. Daintree Rainforest Myrtaceae provide the backbone of this ancient ecosystem’s structural integrity and with populations showing signs of serious deterioration, their loss to this irreplaceable World Heritage treasure will be catastrophic.

Daintree Rainforest Foundation Ltd has been registered by the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission and successfully entered onto the Register of Environmental Organisations.  Donations made to the Daintree Rainforest Fund support the Daintree Rainforest community custodianship and are eligible for a tax deduction under the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997.

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