ARS Victoria Newsletter – April 2016
North Queensland expedition progress
The mountain research program is progressing rapidly. A memorandum of understanding has now been signed between our society and James Cook University and Darren Crayne of the Australian Tropical Herbarium in Cairns ran a highly successful planning workshop in March. The workshop brought together botanists and ecologists with decades of experience in the high mountains of the wet tropics from the Australian Tropical Herbarium, James Cook University, CSIRO, the Wet Tropics Management Authority, Queensland herbarium and others. Francis Crome attended on behalf of our society.
The workshop presented the fundamentals of why the project was developed viz that climate change threatened to eliminate the montane peak habitats. The project therefore aims to:
1. refine our knowledge of population size and distribution on each peak,
2. set up monitoring plots on selected peaks and
3. bring into cultivation in botanic gardens the Rhododendrons and others selected species from
each peak as a long term safeguard.
The workshop then went through all the known mountain top endemic plants (58 species) and gathered the pooled knowledge of their distribution and ecology. It then decided on a final list of target mountains. The targets in order of priority and the proposed dates of sampling are.......
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