Vicki Barnes and Malcolm Ritchie are the owners of Summer Hill Sanctuary, a property located approximately 12km southeast of Murwillumbah. The property is a wildlife-friendly sanctuary and a residence. It is Vicki and Malcolm’s intent for the property to continue to be used in its current purposes and to continue rehabilitating the land and re-establishing wildlife corridors. The property is also registered with Land for Wildlife established with Tweed Shire Council in September 2016.
Summer Hill Sanctuary covers 2.05 hectares and is a rural-residential farm with a separate remnant forest with abundant native regeneration and diverse riparian vegetation, fallen logs and vine thickets. Flora includes brushboxes (Lophostemon confertus), red ashes (Alphitonia excelsa), flooded gums (Eucalyptus grandis), lilly pillies (Syzygium smithii), native daphnes (Pittosporum undulatum), hoveas (Hovea acutifolia), bangalows (Archontophoenix cunninghamiana), Alexandra palms (Archontophoenix alexandrae) bracken ferns (Pteridium esculentum), lomandras (Lomandra longifolia), shiny fan ferns (Sticherus flabellatus), binung ferns (Christella dentata), golden pendas (Xanthostemon chrysanthus), sandpaper figs (Ficus coronata), grevilleas (Grevillea spp.), Davidson plums (Davidsonia pruriens), midgen berries (Austromyrtus dulcis), flame trees (Brachychiton acerifolius), fire wheels (Stenocarpus sinuatus), banksias (Banksia spp.), doryanthes (Doryanthes excelsa), melaleucas (Melaleuca spp.), she oaks (Casuarina spp.), silky oaks (Grevillea robusta), kauri pines (Agathis robusta), tea trees (Leptosperum spp.) and many more. A permanent creek separates the remnant forest from flat to undulating land and provides a vital water source for local wildlife.
Wildlife known to inhabit the area includes swamp wallabies (Wallabia bicolor), ringtail (Pseudocheirus peregrinus) and brushtail (Trichosurus vulpecula) possums and a variety of birds, snakes and lizards. Vicki also looks after two sheep and a cow.