Soil Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning


Global Litter Invertebrate Decomposition Experiment

Macquarie University Ecology Reserve, Australia

Site Manager

Tracey Adams
Centre for Biodiversity and Bioresources
Macquarie University
North Ryde 2109
Telephone: (+61) 02 9850 7248
Fax: (+61) 02 9850 9237

Site Description

Macquarie University Ecology Reserve (MUER) covers approximately 4 ha of dry sclerophyll woodland adjacent to the Macquarie University campus. The mainly open woodland, with Eucalyptus piperita and Angophora costata dominant, is developed on Hawkesbury sandstone with occasional shale bands and generally sandy soils. The reserve forms part of a sinuous, fire prone urban woodland area, much of which consitutes Lane Cove National Park, and was purposely burned in December 1994. In 1996 more than a third of the original reserve was flattened as part of the M2 motorway development. Just recently the Christmas bushfires (2002) swept through the reserve, burning the entire area.

Site Location

The ecology reserve is located between Macquarie University campus and the Lane Cove River in North Ryde, Metropolitan Sydney, Australia. Latitude: 33.7 degrees South; Longitude: 151.1 degrees East.

Site Area

The underlying geology of the reserve is dominated by a sedimentary unit known as the Hawkesbury Sandstone. Some outcrops of bands of shale are also present. Site area is 4 ha.

Site Elevation

Annual Rainfall

Total annual rainfall is approximately 700mm.

Annual Temperature

The climate is temperate with mild winters.


Soils are generally sandy, with more clay elements closer to the river.

Native Forest/Vegetation Types

The vegetation structure of the reserve is primarily open woodland with tree species including Smooth-barked Apple (Angophora costata), Scribbly Gum (Eucalyptus haemastoma) and Peppermint Gum (Eucalyptus piperata).

Principal Biome/Ecoregion

Photo Gallery

Macq_DSCN2771.jpg (485,228 bytes)

Photos courtesy of Tracey Adams




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This webpage is funded by the Soil Science Society of America.

Please contact the GLIDE headquarters (email: if you have any comments or questions.

GLIDE was a project of the International Biodiversity Observation Year 2001-2002

This material is based upon work supported in part by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 98 06437 Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.


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This page was last updated on February 1, 2005

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