The plant and animal species on Cape York Peninsula can show whether the country is healthy for wildlife and being managed sustainably. We place particular value on some of these species because they are rare or threatened in Queensland, Australia or worldwide, or are only found on the peninsula. other are important because their presence shows that the special needs they share with a wide range of other species are being met.
You will find the profiles of Healthy Country Indicator Species for Cape York Peninsula in this guide, along with information on where they live, the habitat features they need, why they are important as indicators, and on how to manage your country well for them. These guidelines contain a range of management actions because a diverse range of habitats is needed to support the diversity of wildlife that is found on the peninsula. Advise should be sought before applying them to other parts of northern Australia, where conditions may be different.
The few species that only flourish where key habitat is fenced to exclude grazing animals deserve special attention, but most species can co-exist with good cattle management. Most pastoralists already manage in a way that supports native wildlife, by avoiding loss of ground cover across much of the property, and controlling pest animals and weeds. So the profiles can be used to demonstrate the positive role pastoralists already play in conservation when healthy populations of these species are present on their properties.
These profiles also give information on management that can improve the sustainability of your property. Most adjustments needed are also considered best practice for pasture management, such as wet season spelling. Even if you do not know if these species occur on your property, following these guidelines will benefit a wide range of plants, animals and country types, and help ensure healthy and productive native pastures.