The Wet Tropics of Queensland, Australia – World Heritage Site


All the Wet Tropics Rainforest’s in Queensland are inscribed on the World Heritage List.  This means that Australia may receive funding and advice to help protect and conserve these areas for future generations to enjoy.  Rainforests are considered uniquely ‘special’ due to their intense concentration and heavy diversity of life that resides in them.  Australia’s tropical rainforests are also the Earth’s oldest continually surviving tropical rainforests and are therefore considered essential for understanding the Earth’s evolutionary history.  This is particularly due to the fact that it contains relicts of the Gondwanan forest that covered Australia (and part of Antarctica) 50-100 million years ago, essentially making it a time capsule for the past.

by Brian Gratwicke
Red-eyed Treefrog (Agalychnis callidryas)

The Wet Tropics of Queensland runs along the northeast coast of Australia for approximately 280 miles from south of Cooktown to north of Townsville.  This stretch encompasses around 894,420 hectares of stunningly biodiverse land.  These rainforests experience a wet and dry season, as well as frequent cyclonic events.  They have an extremely high yet seasonal rainfall, the average of which ranges between 4000mm by the coast to 1200mm out at the far West.  The Wet Tropics are also recognised by its steep environmental gradients, ranging from sea-level to the highlands at 800m, with isolated peaks up to 1622m.

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