A combined Townsville Council, State Government, Commonwealth and
community based initiative to maintain and enhance our waterways in the
coastal dry tropics.

Increasing Community Engagement in Townsville Coastal Catchments for Biodiversity Project
Funded by the Australian Government's Caring for our Country program.

2011 Sub Projects

Activities and Events

Bluewater Creek | Bohle Northshore | Bohle Riparian | Bohle Wetland | Clemant Wetlands | Cocoa Creek | Community Nurseries | Creekwatch | Cungulla Foreshore | Cungulla Wetland | GBR Habitat | Geoffrey and Alma Bay | Horseshoe Bay Habitat | Horseshoe Bay School | M.I. Weed Awareness | Mundy Creek | Nelly Bay Catchment | Nelly Bay Turtle | Northern Beaches | Oak Valley Finch | Paluma Catchment | Petersen Creek | Rainforest Birds Book | Ross River | Rowes Bay Foreshore | Rowes Bay Wetlands | Saunders Beach | Toomulla Foreshore | Town Common Bike TrailTown Common Concept | Town Common Volunteers | Townsville Planning Scheme

Short Title: Oak Valley BTF

Title: Oak Valley Black-throated Finch Habitat Management

Location: Oak Valley Black-throated Finch (BTF) habitat reserves

Organisation: NQ Dry Tropics and Townsville City Council

Project Summary:

Both NQ Dry Tropics and TCC are responsible for the management of land set aside as BTF habitat. The blocks are adjoining at it makes sense to coordinate the management of the two blocks to maximise the condition of the habitat. 

It is useful to provide management guidance to surrounding property owners also to increase the extent of viable BTF habitat or at least the connections between separate viable BTF habitat areas.

A vegetation and habitat condition assessment is desirable to determine the core BTF habitat areas for protection, development assessment and management purposes. Such assessments would be useful for all peri-urban areas prior to development pressure increasing. This would help with the identification of key areas to protect as part of the broader strategic Townsville environmental infrastructure network and biodiversity conservation initiative (as yet unfunded)

Completed actions and events:

•    Habitat Management Guidelines for the Black‐throated Finch (Poephila cincta cincta) in the Brigalow Belt North Bioregion (NRA Environmental Consultants). A project funded by the Black‐throated Finch Trust – August 2011

•    Weed workshop at Oak Valley for BtF habitat management – 25 September 2011

•    Preliminary discussions with NQDT – 25 November 2011

•    “Coordination of invasive species management and the implementation of consistent and appropriate fire regime [across TCC and NQDT blocks] would appear extremely sensible”  (Peter Gibson email) – 29 November 2011

•    Oak Valley Nature Reserve (Lot 193 on EP1881) site visits for baseline study – March 2012

•    BTF sighting photos by Ed Pierce from Birdline North Queensland - 6 May 2012

•    Oak Valley Nature Reserve Black-throated Finch Habitat Management Project Final Report (NRA Environmental Consultants) – July 2012

“The Oak Valley Nature Reserve (hereafter the Reserve) is a 75 ha Townsville City Council (TCC) reserve approximately 15 km from the Townsville City centre. It is situated along the eastern footslopes of Mount Stuart and supports open eucalypt woodland and riparian forests.

The eastern portion of the Reserve, about two-thirds of the total area, is occupied by a low, steeply inclined granitic hill (maximum height 217 m ASL). A narrow colluvial and alluvial piedmont occurs on flatter land to the west of this hill feature. Sachs Creek, a seasonal watercourse, marks the western boundary of the Reserve.

The majority of the Reserve contains remnant vegetation. A small area in the south-west of the Reserve has been developed and contains picnic facilities, a small cricket oval, basketball court and bird-viewing platform. The forested portion of the Reserve contains an interpretive walking trail which is particularly popular with the bird-watching fraternity. An unsealed track runs through the Reserve roughly from south-east to north-west. The Reserve has been the focus of various habitat restoration and community engagement initiatives led by TCC with the support of various project partners, notably the Oak Valley Landcare group.

The southern subspecies of Black-throated Finch (Poephila cincta cincta – hereafter BTF) which is listed as Endangered under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) and the Queensland Nature Conservation Act 1992 (NC Act) has been recorded at the Reserve.

The project scope is described below.
•    Quantify the distribution and abundance of BTFs within the Reserve.

•    Document habitat condition (including critical nesting areas), breeding season, feeding patterns and movements of the BTF at the Reserve.

•    Provide an assessment of, and recommendations to improve, management practices in the Reserve to benefit the BTF.” (p.1)

•    Discuss potential future works on NQDT block (Lot 17 (189 – 197) Chisholm Trail – approximately 40 hectares). Awaiting approval of management plan by Delfin so not ready until next year – 23 October 2012

•    Site works at Oak Valley BTF reserve doing Chinee Apple removal (CVA team) guided by Ray Willis (TCC/ISS) - 15 and 16 November 2012