Fletcherview Classroom in the Outback

Classroom in the Outback

As a working cattle station, we regularly get visits from researchers, students and industry professionals. And we’re only too happy to host your school group for the field trip of a lifetime.

Whether your group is interested in the station itself, the flora, fauna, or the unique lava flows on the property, we can make your stay educational and fun. Your students can watch our researchers at work, or bring their own project to conduct at Fletcherview. Here in the outback, the sky is the limit!

On day and overnight field trips, students take and store blood samples, test the livestock for diseases, conduct physical examinations, test bull semen, and diagnose pregnancies. The station has a store of 25 years’ worth of genetic records of the cattle for students to study heritable and repeatable traits. Our staff are on hand at all times to support and supervise student interactions with the livestock.

JCU Veterinary Science students can visit Fletcherview for placement.

With 2500 hectares of land, we offer students the unique and valuable opportunity to gain pasture experience. With a range of land types, students learn how to identify the nutritional values of different types of grasses and legumes, their nutritional value to horses and cattle, and how to optimise feed production.

Fletcherview has a unique landscape ideal for study by groups, including secondary school and university.

Fletcherview is a geological treasure trove.

Bedrock exposed at “Big Rocks” in the bed and riverbanks of the Burdekin River belongs to a multiphase granitic intrusion, one of many in the Charters Towers district. The granitic bodies were emplaced as hot melt, deep within the crust, some 480-400 million years ago and later brought to the surface by uplift and erosion after cooling and solidifying.

The area was subsequently flooded by a shallow, warm sea about 375 million years ago, depositing sediment and creating layered sedimentary bedrock.  This limestone on the riverbanks contains spectacular fossils, ancient corals and extinct creatures such as stromatoporoids (related to sponges) which built large, layered calcareous skeletons, some over a metre across, with dome and pillar shapes. In some cases, these sea creatures were so abundant that a fossil reef is on display.

Landscape between the Burdekin River and Lolworth Creek represents the top of the basaltic Toomba lava flow, not far from its termination. The Toomba is almost 120km long, making it one of the largest known lava flows on earth. The flow erupted just 13000 years ago from a vent some 100km to the west of Fletcherview. Towards the end of its journey, it flowed down the Burdekin River, occupying the river channel and forcing the river to cut a new course down the side of the flow.

School groups, university classes and collaborating research institutions are all welcome at Fletcherview, whether it’s to study the cattle, the local wildlife, or the land itself. The huge variety of wildlife and plant-life in the area makes Fletcherview ideal for secondary school science classes, while the unique geology of the area is a perfect cast study for budding geologists.

For veterinary science students, practical, hands-on experience is on offer which will give you a taste of life as a vet on a cattle station. You couldn’t find a better option for your degree’s placements than Fletcherview station.

We're also seeking volunteers, particularly those with knowledge of the local area.

Learn how you can plan a trip to Fletcherview.

There is plenty to study at Fletcherview, from cattle, the local wildlife, to the land itself.