“Fletcherview” is a cattle property (1960 hectares) 98 km southwest of Townsville. This area experiences a wet season followed by a 6-9 month dry season, average annual rainfall is 600 mm, however, it can be highly variable from year to year. The vegetation is typical of the area. It is chiefly an open savanna(h) woodland community combined with areas of dry rainforest or ‘vine thicket’. These semi-deciduous communities are typically associated with the unique geological features of the area, the basalt from the “Toomba” lava flows of 100 000 to 13 000 years ago. These lava flows are also associated with substantial marine fossil beds.
Because this is a working cattle property students studying Tropical Agriculture and Tropical Veterinary Science regularly visit the area to get first hand experience of the life and problems associated with grazing in the dry tropics. Student field trips from the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences regularly visit the area to study the unique geomorphology and geology of the lava flows.