Major Towns: Palmwoods, Woombye, Montville.

Subcatchment Area: 5153 Ha

Rainfall: 1690 mm (Palmwoods)

Major Land Uses:

  • Native Vegetation – 1480 Ha
  • Crops – 1337 Ha
  • Sugar Cane – No longer a major crop.

The major land uses within the subcatchment are native vegetation, crops and sugar cane. Native remnant vegetation occupies nearly a third of the subcatchment area, and occurs mostly on the surrounding hills. Cropping, which occupies one quarter of the subcatchment area, occurs mostly in the upper reaches, sugar cane, which occupies 14% of the area, is grown exclusively on the floodplain of the lower subcatchment, near the confluence with Petrie Creek.

Technically a tributary of Petrie Creek, Paynter Creek has its headwaters in the Blackall Ranges near the town of Montville. It discharges into Petrie Creek 2 km from the Maroochy River.

The headwaters of Paynter Creek begin in the Laterised Tertiary Basalt of the Blackall Range. This landform quickly gives way to Sandstone in the upper slopes of the range. This in turn gives way to Laterised Sandstone on the foothills of the range and the valley floor. The drainage line has developed a thin ribbon of Quaternary Alluvium of gravel, sand, silt and clay.

The subcatchment becomes constricted by the fringing low hills of Laterised Triassic to Jurassic Lands borough sandstone halfway along its length. The riparian zone is dominated by a system of semi-continuous valley flats and alcoves. The subcatchment opens out briefly at several points, where small alluvial plains are formed. A continuous alluvial plain develops toward the confluence with Petrie Creek, which joins with that creek,s alluvial plain.

Remnant vegetation covers less than one third (28%) of the subcatchment, none of which is contained in State Forests or National Parks. The vegetation is closely linked to landform. The upper slopes and crests of the low steep hills largely support open Blackbutt (Eucalyptus pilularis) forest interspersed with pockets of gallery forest and palms sheltering in protected areas.

This vegetation type becomes mixed with Bloodwood stands in the upper subcatchment. The riparian zones in the upper catchment support areas of subtropical rainforest; whilst in the lower subcatchment the alluvial plain supports remnants of melaleuca open forest. Near the confluence with Petrie Creek, there are several patches of remnant mangroves, predominately Grey Mangrove (Avicennia marina) inhabiting the creek margins.

Paynter Creek near the confluence with Petrie Creek.

Paynter Creek near the confluence with Petrie Creek.

Healthy mangrove communities are evident on both banks