Community Unites to Preserve Undeveloped Bushland Corridor Next to Toohey Forest

The 26-acre property adjacent to Toohey Forest in Upper Mount Gravatt is an unassuming patch of land. To the untrained eye, it’s just another overgrown lot dotted with relics of its farming heritage. But to environmental experts, it represents something far more significant – a rare opportunity to expand critical habitat for Brisbane’s native flora and fauna.

Read: Koala’s Nighttime Adventure in Upper Mt Gravatt Captivates Southside Brisbane

The potential sale of the parcel of land, located at 139 Klumpp Road in Upper Mount Gravatt, represents a unique chance to safeguard and grow the habitat for native plants and animals, according to Michael Fox, co-President of the Mt Gravatt Environment Group (MGEG). 

Mr Fox notes that since 2007, the group has documented an impressive 280 different species of native plants thriving in the area. Living nearby, Mr Fox is intimately familiar with the forest’s wildlife, including two families of squirrel gliders and a population of koalas that call Toohey Forest their home. 

Photo credit: Michael Fox/Mt Gravatt Environment Group

Dr Carla Catterall, Emeritus Professor of Environmental Sciences at Griffith University, noted in a letter to Brisbane City Council that securing the land comes with several benefits, including avoiding compromising the longer-term ecological integrity, flora and fauna of Toohey forest; and enabling preservation and enhancement of the riparian and aquatic habitats, and water quality, in Mimosa Creek.

Photo credit: Michael Fox/Mt Gravatt Environment Group

Dr Catterall and local environmental groups like MGEG are urging Council to seize this chance to purchase and restore the Klumpp Road site through an online petition, transforming it into a strategic wildlife corridor linking Toohey Forest to the nearby Roly Chapman Bushland Reserve.

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“If the council purchases this land they could build a koala-safe fence. Volunteers from schools and community groups could assist with planting native plants and trees, including suitable koala food sources. The reserve is home to over a hundred species of birds as well as koalas, wallabies and echidnas. It is worth investing in,” the petition reads.

Toohey Forest
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Their calls come amidst growing concerns over the relentless destruction of koala habitat across southeast Queensland, prompting the Australian government to recently reclassify the iconic marsupial as an endangered species.

Read: Griffith University Secures Funding to Expand AI Koala Tracking System

The land is believed to have once been owned by the Williams family – among Brisbane’s pioneering settler families. The Williams are said to have introduced irrigation techniques to grow pineapples, lettuce and celery to the region, cementing their legacy as farming trailblazers. 

Whilst the e-petition has already ended earlier this month, the race is still on for Council to submit an expression of interest for the coveted Klumpp Road property before 30 March 2024, securing the critical biodiversity corridor before developers potentially move in.

Published 12-March-2024