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Change and challenge is life on the land, and Garry and Lee-ann Stonehouse have been up for both. They moved from their property in a drier region of Queensland to Cape York in 2017, where they were assured of more regular and predictable rainfall due to the Cape’s annual wet season.

‘Where we lived before, rain was always the topic of conversation—mainly the lack of!’ Garry said.

Garry and Lee-ann now own and manage Jungle Creek, an 18,000 hectare grazing property in southern Cape York, where they raise breeding cattle.

Cameron and Michelle MacLean have owned Merluna Station, a north western Cape York grazing property, since 2004. Cape York NRM’s Andrew Hartwig started working with the couple in 2019 as part of the Healthy Farming Futures project which supports graziers in the Cape’s western flowing catchments to improve ground cover, soil condition, and vegetation biodiversity in order to reduce erosion and improve the water quality of the Gulf of Carpentaria.

Cameron MacLean spoke to Cape York NRM about what this means for Merluna.

Words Juliana Foxlee | Photo Andrew Brooks

Cape York NRM and Northern Gulf Resource Management Group are working with graziers in the Mitchell catchment to help them develop their knowledge of native vegetation management in a bid to reduce erosion. 

Cape York NRM Acting Principal Program Manager Michael Goddard is managing the project. 

Words Robyn May | Photo Jessie Price-Decle

Cape York grazing families didn’t let a little thing like a Cat 1 cyclone deter them from heading to the 2019 Cape York Grazing Forum held in Laura recently

Cape York NRM ran the event in partnership with South Cape York Catchments, Rural Financial Counselling Services North Queensland, AgForce, Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, and was a great success.