Lennox Head Landcare
Contacts for Lennox Head Landcare are: Malcolm at 6687 5602 and Barbara at 6687 5609
Located between Ballina and Byron Bay in northeastern New South Wales, Lennox Head contains natural areas of unsurpassed beauty and heritage value. Lennox Head residents ask locals and visitors to respectfully enjoy these areas and help us to conserve them for the future.
Lennox Head is noted for its Big Scrub rainforest remnants, spectacular headlands and bays, stunning heath and wetlands, and a long secluded beach.
Significant natural heritage areas in Lennox Head include:
North of Lennox Head, along Seven Mile Beach, is dominated by coastal heath containing sturdy fire resistant flora like the banksia, and wild flowers, such as the Christmas bell, which burst into colourful display during summer, late winter and spring. Forests of scribbty gum and paperbacks, and large stands of grass trees also dominate. These plants attract large numbers of nectar eating insects, birds and mammals.
Littoral rainforest is increasingly rare on the east coast of Australia, however, several remnants survive at Lennox Head. This type of rainforest is found close to the sea on nutrient enriched sands or soils derived from basalt. These vegetation communities were once part of the Big Scrub, an area of subtropical rainforest that covered about 10 000 hectares of northeastern New South Wales. Sadly most was cleared from the early 1860s to the 1900s and now less than one percent remains as scattered, isolated remnants. Three of the littoral rainforest remnants in and around Lennox Head are listed on the Register of the National Estate.
At Tara Downs, south of the township of Lennox Head on Skennars Head Road, is a spectacular stand of palm '' rainforest. This type of rainforest community is dominated by Bangalow (as in this case) or cabbage tree palms and is found on semi-swampy alluvial soils. Other large stands of Bangalow palms in the area have been cleared for coastal housing and agriculture, so that this fine stand is the only one remaining the region.
Coastal Cyprus Forest
Remnants of coastal Cyprus forests are found in several areas around Lennox Head, notably in Williams Reserve and the heath north and west of Lake Ainsworth. Once common in this region, coastal Cyprus stands are becoming increasingly rare due to lowland clearing.
Lennox Head lies partly on and adjacent to the Newrybar Swamp, which extends from the Byron Shire boundary south to the Balling Nature Reserve. North Creek, to the west of the town, flows through these significant wetland areas. The wetlands contain many varieties of ferns and rare patches of cycads, once common before extensive clearing for agriculture. They are also home to many waterbirds, including the brolga, and a number of threatened flora and fauna. Some of these wetlands are protected by State Environmental Planning Policy.
Birrung Creek arises in the wetlands behind Lennox village and flows through wetlands into the mangroves on North Creek. The creek contains significant freshwater flora and fauna which enhance its value as an aquatic nursery once it meets North Creek.
Lake Ainsworth is a perched lake consisting of aquifer fed waters trapped above a layer of impervious coffee rock.
Its tannin stained waters provide habitat for a number of migratory water birds and the surrounding vegetation contains many significant flora and fauna
Known locally as "the moat", Lennox Reef covers an area of 2.5 hectares and extends 1.5 kilometres along Seven Mile Beach. The seaward edge of the reef is located approximately 200 metres offshore. This sensitive reef area contains an assemblage of tropical, sub-tropical and temperate marine species - many of them rare and regionally significant.
The soils of Lennox Head are the result of basalt lava flows from the Mount Warning shield volcano 20 million years ago, overlying older sandstone deposits. These different rock layers are clearly visible along the coast and Lennox Headland, which provides stunning vistas north to Byron Bay and is a great place to watch migrating humpback whales from June to September.
The natural areas of Lennox Head provide a corridor for the movement of flora and fauna, such as koalas, from other natural areas and contain a number of threatened plant and animal species. Most notably one of the few sprey pairs in the region nest in the wetland behind Lennox village, and the Fountaineae oraria, an endangered rainforest plant found only in Lennox Head, grows in several of the rainforest remnants.
The Bora Ring
One of the few well-preserved earth bore rings in New South Wales is located in Gibbon Street in Lennox township. This ceremonial site for the Nyangalong people and the adjacent well-established workshop areas, campsites and middens are significant cultural sites for the Bundjalung nation.
The Dry Stone Walls
A number of well-preserved dry stone walls, relics of the early agricultural settlement of North Creek and Lennox Head, can be found in and around Lennox Head. Built between 1880 and the turn of the century and in the 1920s by local)andowners and Indian farm workers, the walls appear to have been constructed in the Scottish and Irish styles.
The walls, many of which lie adjacent to rainforest remnants, now provide important habitat and wildlife corridors and are an aesthetic reminder of past European and Indian settlement.
You can help us protect the natural and cultural heritage of Lennox Head by:
- Taking all your rubbish with you,
- Lighting fires only in designated fireplaces,
- Walking only on formalised tracks,
- Taking care not to disturb native fauna and flora,
- Adequately restraining domestic pets,
- Planting only native, local plant species and not dumping weeds in natural areas, and
- Joining a volunteer group.
There are several groups concerned with conserving and restoring the natural and cultural heritage values of Lennox Head. Your help would be greatly appreciated.
This information was proudly produced by Lennox Head Landcare.
Artwork: Lyn Skillings, Photography: Anna Heggie