View Full Version : Draft Management Plan - Fitzroy Island

Derek Bullock
16-01-2005, 09:02 PM

Environment, Local Government, Planning & Women, Desley Boyle


Far Northerners are being urged to help identify how special parts of Barron Gorge and Fitzroy Island should be protected.

Environment Minister Desley Boyle - who is also Member for Cairns - said draft management plans were being developed in partnership with traditional owners for the Barron Gorge and Fitzroy Island national parks and marine park waters off Fitzroy.

"The draft plans will help set out how to manage and preserve the significant cultural, recreational, biological and tourism values of these parks," Ms Boyle said.

"We need to look at things like levels of access and what sort of activities people should be able to do in these areas. Issues to take into account include the impacts of motorised water sports and moorings.

"Fitzroy Island National Park is popular, with locals and tourists travelling out there each day," Ms Boyle said.

"A couple from Sydney who visited Fitzroy Island told me they were impressed by the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service signposting that gave out such good information about the national park and its features. It is so important we protect them.

"The Gurubana Gungandji people hunted, gathered foods and held special ceremonies on the island and still visit it today.

"The island is well known for its bird life, including sulphur-crested cockatoos, ospreys and migrating birds, such as buff-breasted paradise kingfishers and pied imperial-pigeons."

Member for Barron River Lesley Clark said: "The Barron Gorge National Park is the most popular in Queensland, with about 1.6million visitors each year.

"Its close proximity to Cairns makes it easy to get to for both locals and tourists. The Barron Gorge is very picturesque with steep ravines, tumbling waterfalls, rich wildlife and tropical rainforest," Dr Clark said.

Comments are particularly sought about the existing and potential opportunities for walking the many historical tracks in the park.

Barron Gorge became part of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area in 1988 and is the traditional home of the Djabaguy-speaking people, as recognised in the historic determination of the Federal Court late last year.

The Barron Gorge management plan will be developed in partnership with the Djabaguy, as the recognised traditional owners of the land.

The Nature Conservation Act 1992 and Marine Parks Act 1982 require the preparation of management plans for each Protected area.

People interested in getting involved should contact Bruce Lawson on 4046 6653 for Barron Gorge National Park or Sarah Offner on 4046 6669 for Fitzroy Island National Park.

Minister's media: Louise Foley or Carissa Mason 3227 8819
Dr Clark: 4038 2800

17-01-2005, 03:53 AM
This will be an interesting one. A little bit of history about Fitzroy....I was GM of this resort in 1989/90.

Owned back then by Dreamworld Corp. Sold to Diakio and now owned and operated by Raging Thunder the backpacker operators. very popular dive and 3 star tourism venture. A long association with recreational fishing and commercial fishing both as a safe anchorage and exceptional mackrel fishing during winter around "little Fitzroy".

On shore most certainly unique. Natural spring with good water flow 12 months of year. Stream running through back of resort home to Jungle Perch (or was) and back in 89 was already suffering effects of tourism impact.

Fringing reef was exceptional but almost totally wiped out by Cyclone which hit at low tide in early 90's. Also supports a clam and pearl farm and camp ground.

On shore this is an Island and an ecology very special and worthy (IMHO) of special protection. PLant life alone is stunning especially a little nock up in the hills called "secret garden" .It's waters however appear to be pretty much the same as every other member of the other continental Islands down as far as the Franklins.

It runs on Diesel power plant, collects its water from the spring which feeds the stream (or did) and treats sewage on shore and disposes of effluent in a low tide outfall.

If I was a sceptic....God forbid...I think little will change in regards tourism use and on island management but they will close all waters to recreational fishing and then tell us what a great job they are doing protecting this national assett.

Hope I'm wrong.