Showing posts from September, 2014

Fox Eradication Progress

Foxes on North Stradbroke Island are still thriving with an estimated population of between 1 and 2000. Recent wildfires only increased the opportunities for these sly and opportunistic predators to attack and eat small native animals left vulnerable with essential vegetation cover incinerated. The eradication program should have been geared up immediately to give native animals the best chance of survival but reaching an agreement of island landholders to a start-up of an island wide action program has been slow. The Redland City Council has, as FOSI members are aware, employed a controller doing good work for some years, but only on council land. The Queensland National Parks Service and QYAC joined this program and enabled eradication work on their lands early in 2014 but only recently has major landholder Sibelco allowed extension of fox control activities on their mining leases (after decades of mining company inaction in fulfilling their legal obligations to control feral animal…

Images of life on Straddie


Planning and Urban Development

For many years, FOSI has played an important role in monitoring residential and commercial development at Point Lookout in particular. No doubt this issue will become more prominent for us in the years to come, with plans for the island’s township expansions being announced a few years ago and next year’s Redland Council planning review raising the spectre of overdevelopment.

FOSI’s recent involvement, as reported to members, includes success in the Planning and Environment Court in preventing development of land on Samarinda Drive. The land’s status was under threat even though its non-development was part of the Samarinda development court orders in the 1990’s.

The Council was ordered to protect the Samarinda Drive land in accordance with a management plan, but the Council has ignored the court’s order to develop and implement the plan and the land remains weed infested and unsightly as a result despite the Council’s attention being drawn to the Court’s previous orders.

In 2013, despit…

Campbell Newman is in quicksand over mining on Stradbroke

North Stradbroke, affectionately known as “Straddie” by most South-east Queenslanders, is the world’s second largest sand island. It’s a popular holiday destination on Brisbane’s doorstep, with beautiful surfing beaches and a laid-back feel.

Amendments to the 2011 North Stradbroke Island Protection and Sustainability Act, passed by the Queensland parliament last November, are intended to allow, in 2019, mineral sand mining on Stradbroke, by the Belgian owned concern Sibelco, to be extended at the main Enterprise mine, to 2035 from its current limit of 2019. Sibelco stands to benefit by $1.5 billion,according to its own figures. Last year, it announced the closure of the ‘Vance’ silica sand mine on the island which had employed 13 people. It had not beenscheduled to close until 2025. Its entire future operations depend upon the Enterprise mine.

In ascathing assessment of Queensland Premier Campbell Newman’s government in late July, Tony Fitzgerald QC wrote that “it has lost much of its s…

The Many Lives of Moreton Bay

For those who haven’t seen this exhibition yet, you only have a few more weeks!

Few know the rich and diverse history of this natural treasure located on Brisbane’s doorstep. The eight month long Museum of Brisbane exhibition of Moreton Bay will end on 12 October. It presents an interesting slice of the history of the Bay, with a North Stradbroke Island display, which includes a section on sand mining.

Initially the sand mining section claimed that sand mining had already been extended to 2035.After FOSI provided the correct information at a meeting with Museum’s Director, attended by FOSI’s President and Vice-President, the Museum conceded the error.
Other changes were also made, resulting in a more balanced presentation.  
If you are interested, there are two remaining curator tours of the exhibition – on Sunday 28 September at 11am and Sunday 12 October at 2pm.
The exhibition is located on level 3 of City Hall, King George Square and is open from 10am to 5pm daily. Don’t miss it !

Recent Media about Sand Mining Issue and The Sibelco Favours

If you are reading the electronic version, just click on the highlights to go the source:-21 August         National edition ofABC’s 7.30 20 August         Independent Australia 10 August         The Guardian Australia 25 July               Brisbane Times 15 July               Independent Australia 15 July               Brisbane Times 5 July                 Independent Australia 24 June              Brisbane Times 11 June              Brisbane Times 10 June              Independent Australia

Leopard Sharks

As ocean temperatures get warmer Leopard Sharks aggregate in the waters of southern Queensland and Northern New South Wales.

Shark. That very word strikes fear into the hearts of us. Their size, power, and great, toothy jaws fill us with fear and fascination.  Enter the leopard shark. It is far from frightening, is not aggressive towards humans, and spends most of its time slowly cruising the seabed, quietly searching for food. As the temperatures get warmer, mature adult leopard sharks aggregate in the waters off southern QLD and northern NSW over the summer months every year.

According to Dr Christine Dudgeon from the University of Queensland, the longest and most comprehensive studies of wild leopard sharks have been conducted off Nth Stradbroke Island.   “Currently 388 individual leopard sharks have been photographed and identified off the dive site known as Manta Bommie/The Group, at Nth Stradbroke Island.

“Each shark is identified by its unique distinctive markings and approximately …

Fire Recovery


Media Corrections of Misreporting of Sand Mining Extensions

Members will recall that the media and others weremisled by the Government into reporting that last November’s Newman government amendments to the North Stradbroke Protection and Sustainability Act 2011 extended island sand mining leases to 2035.Some media outlets have made corrections to earlier reports after realising they had been misled by the Government. Below are links to two corrections so far, with the published editors’ notes :- ABC Correction Editors note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that the sand mining leases on North Stradbroke Island are due to finish by 2035 after the State Government extended the leases held by sand mining company Sibelco last year. The State Government's amendments are intended to allow sand mining to be extended again to 2035, however the legislation does not permit Sibelco to make the applications to renew the relevant leases until 2019. Guardian Correctionhttp://w…

Upcoming Event - Save the Date!

Glossy Black-Cockatoo Birding Day – Sunday 19 October 2014
Lisa Bailey from RCC is also coordinating this event to count these threatened island birds – for more information contact Lisa and check out the Glossy Black Conservancy web page at