Conservation Action Planning

Our projects and programs

A best-practice framework to protect biodiversity

NQ Dry Tropics’ Protecting Biodiversity programme supports the Burdekin Dry Tropics community to protect, maintain and restore biodiversity in the region. It does this by facilitating and administering a regional governance framework that enables the community to:
● assess the distribution and status of biodiversity, habitat condition and future threats
within the region;
● scope landscape-scale biodiversity projects, and establish goals and strategies to protect,
maintain and restore values; and
● objectively, consistently and transparently manage actions, and their intended and actual

To better achieve these goals, the Protecting Biodiversity programme recently adopted the Conservation Action Planning (CAP) framework, which:

● is an internationally-recognised, best-practice process that establishes the top conservation priorities within a landscape,
● enables like-minded stakeholders, working towards similar goals, to collaborate and develop strategic, long-term plans that address biodiversity needs in a particular region, including appropriate management actions,
● saves time and money by getting stakeholders working together to achieve agreed objectives, and pooling their resources such as ideas, equipment and expertise,
● is a workshop-driven process that integrates existing plans and knowledge with additional expertise,
● can easily be adapted to account for different landscapes and scales,
● is transparent and provides accountability for how funds are invested,
● provides a tried and tested way of monitoring and evaluating project outcomes,
● is used in over 1,000 conservation projects worldwide and is supported by an international network of experienced CAP coaches, and
● is also known as the Open Standards Adaptive Management Framework.

We have divided the Burdekin Dry Tropics region into three zones, based on their landscape biodiversity values and what made sense to the local communities.

Download map of these CAP zones.

The CAP Process begins with a series of workshops that bring together knowledgeable people to work through a sequence of logical planning steps to develop a shared conservation plan for the region.

The CAP framework is underpinned by a comprehensive set of planning tools and guidelines that take a project team through a series of planning steps. Specialised, purpose-built software is used to store the strategic plan and also provides extensive support for work planning, monitoring and project management. A global movement, the Conservation Coaches Network, supports the CAP process with free tools and guidance for conservation projects, and has a network of workshop facilitators trained in their application.

The Open Standards adaptive management cycle (

You can find more information at or

How Can You Be Involved?

We are approaching NRM organisations to enlist their help in working towards a better biodiversity future for the Burdekin region. If you think you could help please contact NQ Dry Tropics to find out more on CAP in the Burdekin region on 07 4724 3544 or

Download the fact sheet (1Mb PDF)

Useful links for more information

Conservation Gateway – CAP
Greening Australia CAP Practitioners – Example
The Wilderness Society CAP Example