RSS

Category Archives: wildlife and animals

A PROJECT TO HELP THE ENDANGERED NORTHERN BETTONG – AND YOU CAN GET INVOLVED

northern Bettong - pic Qld Parks & Wildlife

northern Bettong – pic Qld Parks & Wildlife

Meet the northern bettongbettongia tropica – a small, shy marsupial somewhere between a kangaroo and a rodent. They live in relatively small pockets of far north Queensland, they’re endangered, and they could do with your help.

A project is getting underway to help conserve the northern bettong – involving James Cook University, WWF Australia, Queensland Parks and Wildlife and others. And there’s a role for you, if you’d like to volunteer some time, exploring bettong habitats here in FNQ and gathering information about their health, population numbers and the pressures on their preferred homes on the border of wet and dry forest areas.

Dr Sandra Abell – from James Cook University – will be talking about the project on Thursday night (June 5) at the Malanda Hotel at 7.30pm – the Tree-Kangaroo & Mammal Group is putting the event on and would love to see you there.
And you can listen to my interview with Sandra Abell here

adult bettong with youngster pic Tegan Whitehead

adult bettong with youngster pic Tegan Whitehead

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements
 
Comments Off on A PROJECT TO HELP THE ENDANGERED NORTHERN BETTONG – AND YOU CAN GET INVOLVED

Posted by on June 3, 2014 in Atherton Tablelands, EFFINCUE, environment, rd on the road, wildlife and animals

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IT’S WHALE SEASON IN FAR NORTH QUEENSLAND – GET TO KNOW THE HUMP-BACK

humpIt’s whale season in far north Queensland – a time of year when your chances of seeing a whale up close are pretty good. The local reef and tour boat operators have a network of people who report sightings, and even a short boat journey from Cairns might get you a whale moment or several. It is a breath-taking experience, seeing these huge creatures in their environment. But big as they get, they are still vulnerable, with climate change, collisions with boats, and hunting being the major threats.

The humpback whale is the one you’re most likely to see in far north Queensland waters – LISTEN our wildlife correspondent Martin Cohen talk about what we know – and don’t yet know – about humpbacks: their diet, their migration, their love-life:

2 mart

 

 
Comments Off on IT’S WHALE SEASON IN FAR NORTH QUEENSLAND – GET TO KNOW THE HUMP-BACK

Posted by on May 28, 2014 in EFFINCUE, far north Queensland, wildlife and animals, Wildlife Martin Cohen

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

IT’S BUTTERFLY TIME IN FAR NORTH QUEENSLAND

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The far north Queensland wet season is over for another year and the start of the dry is a great time to see butterflies and moths around the region. During the wet, conditions are just too tough for these beautiful creatures to flourish in significant numbers, but as the seasons change, you’ll see plenty of Cairns Birdwing and Ulysses butterflies, and many more.

Our wildlife correspondent Martin Cohen introduces you to the many butterfly and moth species of Cairns and FNQ.

LISTEN

Martin Cohen at Lake Eacham FNQ

Martin Cohen at Lake Eacham FNQ

 

 

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

HOW MANY SEASONS ARE THERE IN A TROPICAL YEAR? IN KAKADU, THE ANSWER IS SIX

YELLOW WATERS LAGOON

YELLOW WATERS LAGOON

Here in far north Queensland, indeed, right across tropical Australia, we tend to count just two seasons – the wet and the dry. In the wet, the monsoon brings huge amounts of rain and the possibility of cyclones – and it’s all that water that makes this place such an attractive home to our wildlife. During the dry, the days are hot, nights are warm and the place is chockers with tourists. Of course, it can rain during the dry, but the rain comes from a different direction and in usually much smaller amounts. But within those two broad “seasons”, there are subtle changes, periods when change is on its way and signs of what’s next become more apparent. Indigenous people in tropical Australia identify several distinct seasons – in the lush wetlands of Kakadu, in the Northern Territory, the local mob recognise six distinct seasons.

COMB CRESTED JACANA

COMB CRESTED JACANA

Our wildlife correspondemt Dr Martin Cohen is in Kakadu this week, working with a Japanese film crew who are documenting the region’s most famous wetland – Yellow Waters – and some of its wildlife, including Norm the comb crested jacana, who Martin reckons should get the dad of the year award. LISTEN to Martin explain the critters and the seasons of Kakadu 

Dr Martin Cohen is ABC Far North wildlife correspondent. Hear him on radio Wednesday afternoons at 445 or search for him on your podcast app

 
Comments Off on HOW MANY SEASONS ARE THERE IN A TROPICAL YEAR? IN KAKADU, THE ANSWER IS SIX

Posted by on February 6, 2014 in Aboriginal, EFFINCUE, environment, indigenous, tropical weather & climate, wildlife and animals, Wildlife Martin Cohen

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

THE CAIRNS ESPLANADE – A WORLD FAMOUS BIRD WATCHING LOCATION

DSC_0273ABC Far North wildlife correspondent Martin Cohen and I have travelled far and wide this year to observe the amazing birds and animals of far north Queensland. One of the best things about living in FNQ is that you don’t have to travel very far from home to see wildlife. In fact one of the best spots is right in the heart of the Cairns CBD – the Cairns Esplanade.

The Nard, as old time Cairns locals call it, is famous the world over as a great birdwatching spot. On any day you’ll meet bird-watchers from many nations there, equipped with some amazing cameras and scopes, marvelling at the birds that come in looking for food in the mud flat when the tide is just right. Pelicans, egrets, terns, all sorts. LISTEN to Martin talk about what you might see here

Dr Martin Cohen is ABC Far North wildlife correspondent. Hear him on radio Wednesday afternoons at 445 or search for him on your podcast ap

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 
Comments Off on THE CAIRNS ESPLANADE – A WORLD FAMOUS BIRD WATCHING LOCATION

Posted by on November 13, 2013 in Cairns Queensland, EFFINCUE, wildlife and animals, Wildlife Martin Cohen

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

RIVERSLEIGH FOSSIL FIND PROVES GIANT PLATYPUS ONCE ROAMED NORTH QUEENSLAND

platypIt’s an improbable creature that seems to be built of spare parts from other species. The platypus is a semi-aquatic mammal, but it lays eggs. That makes it one of only five monotremes – mammals that lay eggs instead of giving birth. Early Europeans in Australia didn’t know what to make of it – a duck bill, beaver tail, feet like an otter and a spur on the hind leg that delivers a potent venom. So improbable was this creature that British scientists in the late 1700s thought it was a hoax.

But we know otherwise. This unique creature is very real, and up close, very cute. But watch out for that spur. They’re a common site in some far north Queensland waterways. I often see them at the creek near the Chinese temple at Atherton. They’re a fairly small creature, but that wasn’t always the case.

A giant platypus with powerful teeth once roamed the rivers of northern Australia. It was at least twice the size of the modern platypus, had very powerful teeth and seems to have been a very effective predator. The scientists who’ve discovered evidence of its existence say it’s like a modern platypus on steroids – a platypus Godzilla.

Professor Mike Archer of the University of New South Wales is co-author of a report on the creature in the Journal of Vertebrate Palaeontology. Mike says a tooth found at the famous Riversleigh world heritage area in north-west Queensland gives us an idea of how big this ancient platypus was. It’s been called Obdurodon tharalkooschild. Tharalkoo refers to a female duck in an indigenous dreamtime story who is ravished by a water rat named Bigoon, resulting in a child that was a cross between a duck and a rodent – the first platypus.

LISTEN to Mike Archer here

 
Comments Off on RIVERSLEIGH FOSSIL FIND PROVES GIANT PLATYPUS ONCE ROAMED NORTH QUEENSLAND

Posted by on November 5, 2013 in EFFINCUE, environment, wildlife and animals

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

WHAT FNQ AND ECUADOR CAN LEARN FROM EACH OTHER TO LOOK AFTER OUR FROGS

frogABC Far North wildlife correspondent Martin Cohen has a visitor this week –  a man who’s travelled a long way to get to far north Queensland. He’s come all the way from Ecuador to check out our frogs.

OK – it’s a bit more than checking them out. Andres Merino-Viteri is an Ecuadorian herpetologist studying the physiological thresholds of Microhylid frogs in the wet tropics. There are about 500 species of Microhylids – small frogs found in tropical zones, including here in FNQ.

ANDRES MERINO-VITERI

ANDRES MERINO-VITERI

Andres worked at the Museo de Zoología at the Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador, hoping to find causes of the unexpected disappearance of several species of frogs along the Ecuadorian Andes during the 80s and 90s. Climate change was a key suspect, and some of these species are now possibly extinct. He’s working on his PhD project here, modelling the impacts of climate change on the range of Microhylid frogs and looking for ways to keep the frogs from extinction.

Martin and Andres met in Cairns six years ago – LISTEN to them talking about frogs and threats to frog populations here

Dr Martin Cohen is ABC Far North wildlife correspondent. Hear him on radio Wednesday afternoons at 445 or search for him on your podcast app.2 mart

 
Comments Off on WHAT FNQ AND ECUADOR CAN LEARN FROM EACH OTHER TO LOOK AFTER OUR FROGS

Posted by on October 24, 2013 in EFFINCUE, environment, rd on the road, wildlife and animals, Wildlife Martin Cohen

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,