Stories in this Theme

Organisations across Cape York are working together to educate people about the need to deal with their rubbish responsibly when travelling around the Cape. Funded by the Queensland Government and coordinated by Cape York NRM, the campaign targets both locals and tourists and urge them to plan ahead for responsible waste disposal before they even hit the road.   

Six rangers representing six groups from across Queensland came together at Melsonby in August to participate in the Stepping Up pilot program. The program is an initiative of South Cape York Catchments and Queensland Government, Department of Environment and Heritage Protection, in partnership with Melsonby Land and Sea Rangers.

The Stepping Up program was developed to enhance individual skills, by enabling rangers to manage a project from start to finish.

Following a comprehensive review of potential climate impacts for northern Queensland, a new report released outlines expected impacts for the north of the state.

This report details the tourism industry on the Cape York Peninsula and methods to ensure sustainable land use within the industry from both residents and visitors. Published by Probe in September 2003.

This report identifies the major areas and reasons for visitor and community interest on Cape York Peninsula. It develops ways for the tourism industry to focus on themes and markets, and explores ways of communicating to a wide audience.

This region covers Cape York Peninsula in far north Queensland. It has spectacular natural landscapes, numerous pastoral leases and Aboriginal communities as well as a large bauxite mine at Weipa. It covers an area of 115,000 square kilometres and has a relatively large area set aside for conservation. Pastoralism however is the dominant land use.

Grazing management

Cape York has management issues which are quite different to those experienced by graziers elsewhere in Northern Australia. Because many of the properties are only marginally productive, many graziers in Cape York must engage in off-farm employment such as fencing, mustering or supplying tourist facilities. It also means that there is very little capital available for property development.

People in the savanna country have to live with this reality: that managing the country to a large extent means managing fire. Communication, collaboration and education are keys to improving fire management across the north.


Pastoralism began in Cape York Peninsula when the Jardine brothers drove 250 cattle from Bowen to Somerset on the tip of Cape York Peninsula. This epic journey was not because any pastoral paradise was beckoning but rather in response to their father’s need for fresh meat at the establishing settlement of Somerset. Their journal records the spectrum of country in Cape York Peninsula, from forested sand ridges and dense scrubs to waterless, treeless coastal plains and boggy tea tree flats.

Cattlmen mustering

Pastoralism is a major land use, but is only marginally productive in Cape York.

This project has two main aims:

1. To investigate the novel pharmacological actions and chemical compounds of plant species used as traditional medicines from an area of high biodiversity, the Kaanju Homelands centred on the Wenlock and Pascoe Rivers.

2. To facilitate the preservation and transfer of cultural knowledge about these plants among core Kaanju families living on homelands.