Platypus & Plains-wanderer protection

Platypus & Plains-wanderer protection

Thursday, July 27, 2023

WIRES has commenced a three-year partnership with Taronga Conservation Society Australia, to support the conservation of two iconic Australian animals – the Platypus and the Plains-wanderer.

The funding of more than $1.4 million will support operations of the soon-to-be-opened Platypus Rescue HQ at Taronga Western Plains Zoo and provide additional camera technology to monitor critically endangered Plains-wanderers as part of the National Recovery Program. 

The partnership continues WIRES commitment to fund native wildlife programs that address Australia’s increasing number of threatened species.  

“We are excited to be working with the team at Taronga on these two important initiatives,” said Leanne Taylor WIRES CEO. “Taronga’s expertise in species conservation is exemplary and we are totally committed to supporting best practice in this area.”

The Platypus is an Australian icon and is sadly particularly susceptible to drought and environmental change. Taronga’s Platypus Rescue HQ, which is set to open later this year will provide rehabilitation facilities, increase the capacity to undertake emergency rescues, help address knowledge gaps in reproductive biology, and develop improved species translocation and conservation strategies.

“The care required for platypus rehabilitation is complex and specialised. The need for this type of facility cannot be understated and will really support our work post rescue,’ said Taylor.

Funding will also support the critically endangered Plains-wanderer which has been identified as a native species requiring urgent intervention with less than 1,000 individuals thought to be left remaining in the wild.

WIRES will help Taronga build on their recovery work by supporting ongoing breeding programs, and the continuation of research to better understand the behavioural cues that lead to successful breeding.  Taronga’s conservation breeding program forms part of the National Species Recovery Program which is delivered in collaboration with partners across NSW and Victoria.

“The Plains-wanderer and the Platypus are unique species in their own right, yet united in their precarious position as forces such as climate change, habitat loss and feral pests threaten their declining and fragmented populations,” said Taronga CEO Cameron Kerr AO.

“Taronga has made a commitment to both these species and we’re so grateful to have the support of WIRES who have partnered with us to extend on our conservation science work and help secure a future for these species,” said Kerr.

About Taronga

Taronga Conservation Society Australia is a leader in the fields of conservation, research, animal welfare, wildlife rehabilitation and environmental education. Taronga is a not-for-profit organisation with an absolute commitment to conservation and securing a shared future for wildlife and people. Taronga’s staff, scientists and researchers are experts in their fields. They work in partnerships with governments, universities and conservation organisations to support dozens of science, research and conservation projects and programs across Australia and around the world. Taronga believes that a future without wildlife is not an option. Taronga is for the wild.

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