Queensland

The rise and fall and rise again of a valley’s Rattler

As settlers moved into the rich, fertile areas of the Mary Valley in the 1860s, they wanted a railway to connect them more readily to the outside world and markets for their produce.

The government ignored their early calls, but all that changed when prospectors discovered gold at nearby Gympie in 1867.

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The fruit and salad bowl of Queensland

Introduction

If you have driven around the patchwork of fertile red volcanic soils east of Bundaberg, you would have noticed several paddocks of fruit and vegetable crops, in addition to the vast cane fields. Bundaberg is best known for its sugar cane and rum. However, these days, the region is a true fruit and salad bowl area feeding the nation.

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Will the dominos fall across the country after Victoria and Western Australia ended the harvesting of native forests?

It seems that the people who came up with the plan to return all Western Australia’s and Victoria’s public land to a cycle of lockup and incinerate wilderness management know as much about forest management and timber supply timelines as an average kindergarten pupil. – Quote from South East Timber Association

When I started as a young forester in the late 1980s, I yearned for the opportunity to work in our native forests.

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Another birthday for Hervey Bay’s jewel attraction

Early trade in Maryborough

The port of Maryborough on the Mary River was significant, not only for the development of Maryborough itself but also for trade in south-east Queensland. It exported gold, hides, tallow, refined and raw sugar, rum, antimony and timber. Also, after the separation of the colony from New South Wales in 1859, Maryborough was declared a port of entry and necessitated the collection of customs on behalf of the government.

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A fable about land management in the tropics

This is a story to illustrate an instructive lesson on active land management. It involves animals including humans, plants and forces of nature.

My story is a call to arms to highlight that our land management issues are not straightforward and the solutions require the fortitude to go against elitist and misguided orthodoxy.

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The big shift – towns that have moved in Australia

As we travelled around Australia, I was amazed at how many towns we came across that had shifted for whatever reason. While I already knew about a few, I had no idea many towns were forced to move.

Probably one of the best-known is Eucla on the Nullarbor Plain. The Eucla Telegraph Station opened in 1877 and helped link Western Australia with the rest of Australia and the world.… Read more

The 1939 fires – a blame game

And of course there were ignitions by the fistful. Lightning kindled some fires, but most emanated from a register of casual incendiarists that reads like a roster of rural Australia: settlers, graziers, prospectors, splitters, mineworkers, arsonists, loggers and mill bushmen, hunters looking to drive game, fishermen hoping to open up the scrub around the streams, foresters unable to contain controlled burns, bush residents seeking to ward off wildfire by protective fire, travellers and transients of all kinds.

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The silver town that was auctioned off the face of the earth

After James ‘Philosopher’ Smith discovered the rich Mount Bischoff tin deposit near Waratah in 1871, there was a keenness to prospect other areas of the West Coast region. Prospector William Robert Bell was one of them. He was employed by the Van Diemen’s Land Company (VDL Co.) in May 1875 to carry out prospecting on the eastern boundary of Hampshire Hills following the discovery of tin near Mount Housetop, some three miles away.

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50 years since a dream became a reality

The idea

Nestled deep in the Gradys Creek Valley on the southern side of the McPherson Range, which separates New South Wales from Queensland, lie several properties, a small school and a community hall. There is no communal area or village, but it is known as The Risk. The name came from the first settler who decided to take a risk to ride over the mountain. … Read more