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Rainforests are native forests with dense, often closed (>80% crown cover) canopy. A range of lifeforms, including trees, palms, shrubs, ferns, vines, tree ferns and epiphytes may be abundant and arranged in several layers and composed of a large number of fire sensitive, shade tolerant species. Grasses, eucalypts and other light loving plants are usually absent.



Forest Ecosystems


What ecosystem functions do rainforest perform?


Tall trees, epiphytes and fungi are common species in rainforests.


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Table 1 below presents the relative magnitude rainforests perform different ecosystem functions (relative to other ecosystems) in SEQ.


Table 1:The relative magnitude (to other Ecosystem Reporting Categories) rainforests perform each ecosystem function.

Ecosystem Function Category Ecosystem Function 0
Regulating Functions
Gas Regulation            
Climate Regulation            
Disturbance Regulation            
Water Regulation            
Soil Retention            
Nutrient Regulation            
Waste Treatment and Assimilation            
Biological Control            
Barrier Effect of Vegetation            
Supporting Functions
Supporting Habitats            
Soil Formation            
Provisioning Functions
Raw Materials            
Water Supply            
Genetic Resources            
Provision of Shade and Shelter            
Pharmacological Resources            
Cultural Functions
Landscape Opportunity            


What types of rainforests are in SEQ?

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This Ecosystem Reporting Category contains the following Regional Ecosystems: 12.2.1, 12.2.2, 12.2.3, 12.2.4, 12.3.2, 12.11.1, 12.11.2, 12.12.1, 12.3.1, 12.8.3, 12.8.4, 12.11.10, 12.12.16, 12.8.5, 12.8.6, 12.8.7, 12.8.18, 12.8.13, 12.9-10.15, 12.9-10.16, 12.11.11, 12.11.12, 12.12.13, 12.5.13, 12.8.21, 12.8.22, 12.8.23, 12.11.4, 12.11.13, 12.12.17, 12.12.18, 12.12.26.   



A high diversity of bird species inhabit SEQ rainforests.

A dense canopy allows only intermittent light to the forest floor.

Links to other publications and websites

Qld Govt - Rainforests
Aust. Rainforest Conservation Society
WWF Rainforest Recovery Program
Qld Govt Forestry Agreement


What is the area and extent of rainforests in SEQ?

Rainforest ecosystems cover approximately 1 256 km2, 5% of SEQ. This map shows rainforests  are predominantly located in the north and south of SEQ. Large rainforest areas include the Border Ranges and the Main Range (bordering Qld and NSW), D'Aguilar Range, Brisbane Range and the littoral rainforests of Cooloola. Other areas of rainforest ecosystems on the SEQ boundary include the Bunya Mountains and Conondale - Blackall Range. Other scattered pockets of rainforests occur throughout SEQ.


What is the vulnerability of rainforests and threats to this ecosystem in SEQ?


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How do we manage rainforests in SEQ?


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