Build it and they will come

Ray and Viv Cranney’s property Bonyi, located 37 kilometres north east of Goondiwindi, is one of the four properties which form the focus of the Bulloak Jewel Butterfly Project.

Long-term advocates of sustainable agriculture and land management, around 20 per cent of Ray and Viv’s property is kept as wildlife corridors, with a section fenced off and protected since the 1990s through their involvement in the Land for Wildlife initiative.

They have welcomed the opportunity to carry out further conservation work on their property with the knowledge that they could provide critical habitat for the endangered bulloak jewel butterfly and its ant friend.

On Bonyi, a total of three one-hectare plots will be dedicated to the project – one control site and two plots which will be fenced to keep cattle and pests out and on which the habitat restoration work will take place.

This will include a mix of planting bull oak trees and other food sources for the butterfly, controlling invasive growth of the white cypress pine (Callitris glaucophylla), and improving habitat for the ant such as placing logs on the ground and spreading bull oak leaf litter. Another five habitat plots will be located on the properties owned by the other members of the ‘butterfly collective’.