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Agnes River

Agnes River Cool Temperate Rainforest and Wet Forest Buffers Protected (October 06)

The Agnes River rainforest is bounded by the Grand Ridge Road to the north, the Toora/Gunyah Road to the west, Devil's Pinch Road to the south and Agnes No 2 Track to the east.

Agnes Rainforest

The Agnes River headwaters contains some of the best mountain ash regrowth and cool temperate rainforest remaining in the Strzeleckis. A tiny section of these headwaters has been set aside as a flora and fauna reserve. Outside the reserve some of the spurs and gullies have suffered damage in the last 10 to 15 years, as forest has been cleared and spurs planted with mountain ash, but the proportion that could be classified as plantation is small. There remains large areas of native forest, mature mountain ash and messmate and cool temperate rainforest.

Within the rainforest, 4 rare rainforest species have been identified. They are; Tmesipteris elongata (A species of Forked Fem), River Hook Sedge, Slender Tree Ferns and Skirted Tree Ferns.

The rainforest is most extensive in the area within the reserve. It covers the gullies along the main river course and along the full length of each tributary, except at the southern-most end of the reserve where damage to the tributary caused by logging and land clearing has resulted in most of that tributary having only scattered myrtle beech trees. Below the reserve there is extensive cool temperate rainforest along the main river course, although there are a few small sections on the western side of the river that have only scattered myrtle beech trees. These sections coincide with those areas where logging activity, clearing and replanting, has occurred over the last 10 to 15 years..

Agnes Fauna

The reserve is dominated by mountain ash regrowth, with many mature and old-growth trees. Outside the reserve there are large areas of native forest and some strips of young mountain ash plantation only 1 0 to 15 years old. The native forest consists of numerous pockets of mountain ash and messmate regrowth (containing a considerable number of mature-age trees with hollows) and extensive Blackwood forest.

The Strzeleckis has lost almost all its mixed age/mixed species eucalypt forest. If what remains is not protected, all that will be left will be isolated in the tiny pockets at Gunyah and Tarra Bulga. The areas at present reserved are very small and are unlikely to be able to sustain a viable population of the fauna that are dependent on mature-age trees. This is likely to have a dramatic effect on the native fauna remaining in the Strzeleckis.

Greater Gliders are found in both the Franklin and Agnes headwaters, both inside and outside the reserve. Gliders require trees with large hollows in which to den during the day and raise their young. Greater Gliders also usually require a variety of eucalypts as the feed almost exclusively on the leaves, bud and flowers of eucalypts.

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