Stories in this Theme

What it looks like: Mapania is a large coarse sedge that is sometimes likened to Screw Palms (Pandanus spp.). Its leaves, which can be as long as 4 metres, have three ribs and distinct secondary nerves, and are spiny along the edges. Mapania produces single-seeded fleshy fruits called drupes.

Project Number: CY PA 10 - Turtles

Project Name: Phase Two Cape York Turtle Nest Monitoring Project

Organisation: Cape York Peninsula Development Association

Project Number: CY PA 13 - Crab Island

Project Name: Crab Island Flatback Turtles

Organisation: Cape York Peninsula Development Association

What it looks like: Mertens' Water Monitor is a medium to large goanna that can grow up to 1 metre long. It has a dark brown to black back and numerous small dark-edged cream or yellow spots. Its sideways flattened tail is well-adapted for swimming.

What it looks like: Luisia Orchid is a pale green, wiry plant that forms straggly and sometimes weeping clumps along tree branches. Its long, tubular leaves are borne in two rows along the stem. It has green flowers with a dark burgundy lip.

What it looks like: The Leatherback Turtle is the largest of all living sea turtles. It can weigh up to 500 kg and have a shell length of over one and a half metres. Its leathery shell has five longitudinal ridges and tapers to a point at the tail end. It is black with lighter spots. The shells of hatchlings are black with white markings on the ridges.

What it looks like: This large marine mammal can grow to 18 m long. Mostly black, it is white on its chin, belly and flippers. Clusters of tubercles make it look barnacle-encrusted. Its spectacular displays include launching its body out of the ocean, then crashing down on the water surface, and raising its broad tail flukes above the water in repeated dives.

What it looks like: Pternandra is a multi-stemmed shrub or tree with smooth, apricot-grey bark. Its glossy green, oval leaves are borne in opposite pairs and have a single distinct vein running along the inside of each margin. Its pale blue to purple flowers are borne in small clusters in the leaf axils, and develop into round yellow-green berries that turn black as they ripen.

What it looks like: Northern Quolls are grey brown with white spots on the body. The long black tail is sparsely furred with no spots. The size of a possum, a Northern Quoll has a pointed face, sharp teeth and a clawless big toe.

What it looks like: The Common Brushtail possum is a medium-sized mammal with fur that is grey or brown, and usually paler on the breast and belly. It has large, prominent ears that have a narrowly round tip and are longer than they are broad. Its bushy tail is slightly shorter than its combined head and body length.