What we’re doing on the property
One of our biggest tasks at Goonderoo is to help the shrubby woodlands regenerate – a task that’s made challenging by an introduced pasture crop – Buffel Grass.
Native to Africa and India, Buffel Grass was brought into Australia as a drought and fire-tolerant livestock feed. Since then it's replaced native plants over large areas.
As well as dramatically increasing damage from fires, Buffel Grass burns so hot that it kills most native Australian plants. Even the fire-adapted ones.
We're using strategic controlled grazing to keep the buffel grass at bay, which reduces the risk of intense fire and gives the native plants a chance to get established.
Managing fire and weeds helps us maintain habitat for mammals on the reserve, including Rufous Bettongs, Koalas, Bandicoots and Sugar Gliders. Volunteers regularly conduct monitoring and pest management work on Goonderoo to help protect threatened mammals that are vulnerable to invasive predators.
Flashjacks back from the dead
Up until the early 1970s it was thought that the only place left to see a Bridled Nailtail Wallaby was in the history books.
This beautiful, lively marsupial, also known as a Flashjack Wallaby, hadn’t been seen for 36 years. But that all changed in 1973 when the animal was sighted on a cattle station near Dingo in central Queensland.
It was later discovered that the wallaby was part of a population of nailtails that had survived in what's now the Taunton National Park.
Since then two more populations have been established as part of an insurance policy against the loss of the Taunton animals.
One of these sanctuaries is at Avocet Nature Reserve, which adjoins Goonderoo. We’re hoping that by restoring the shrublands and woodlands of Goonderoo, the Bridled Nailtail Wallaby will have one more place to call home.
History and cultural values
There are Aboriginal artefacts on the reserve, showing that Indigenous inhabitants occupied the Goonderoo area.
Initially established by European settlers for sheep and timber production, the area soon became cattle-grazing country. The Spooner family settled on what is now Goonderoo during the 1940s, and the family maintains a strong interest in the reserve.