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Oct 17, 2018

Thank You for Supporting our Wombats!

Thanks for your incredibly generous support of our wombat program over the past few years. Our program is ending now, but the part we have played in the development of a simple survey technique and in training local volunteers and community groups in mange surveying is invaluable. With your help, we have now created a huge community of people who can assist in identifying wombats with mange around the state – what a wonderful legacy!

Throughout the course of this project, we surveyed 2,005 wombats, assessed 1,725 for mange and calculated that for the sites we surveyed, the average mange prevalence was 2.3%, which is great news for wombats!

As the program moves into the next phase, from surveying to management, our project partner The University of Tasmania, is now conducting safety trials on a new drug that will potentially provide a long acting, single dose treatment for mange affected wombats. If successful, this will be a real game changer in the way mange in managed in the wild. We look forward to seeing the results at the end of the safety trials.

Once again, thank you for supporting our project and helping to provide a future for the wombats.

Aug 16, 2018

Creating More Habitat for Rewilding

One objective of the Rewilding the Desert program is to create more habitat for our local native wildlife. At our wonderful Salvana Conservation Reserve we are working hard to restore and rehabilitate approximately 400 ha of this property that was historically cleared or modified for agricultural use.

The aim of these revegetation projects is to improve the conservation value of the reserve and the region, and to provide biodiversity and climate change resilience for threatened species like the South-eastern Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo (RTBC) (Calyptorhynchus banksii graptogyne) and the Malleefowl (Leipoa ocellata). The RTBC has a highly specialised diet, feeding exclusively on seeds of Desert and Brown Stringybark’s (Eucalyptus baxteri and E. arenacea), and the Buloke (Allocasuarina leuhmannii). The National Recovery Plan lists a shortage of food as a key threat to the RTBC’s.

In these projects our revegetation works will:

  • help link the West and Central blocks of the Little Desert National Park to create a 132,000 ha biodiversity corridor by reconnecting fragmented patches of remnant vegetation, benefiting local biodiversity and threatened species alike,
  • plant Desert Stringybarks for the RTBC’s to feed on in the future; and
  • help protect the large old Desert Stringybark tree. These large old trees produce prolific amounts of seed and are therefore a critical feeding resource for the birds locally.

At the reserve we have four major revegetation projects currently underway totalling 171 hectares or 422 acres (see map) to help achieve these objectives. This year we:

  • Targeted 84 ha (208 acres) across three project areas for revegetation. These sites were prepared for planting by slashing and spraying rows between 4m and 10m apart.
  • Direct seeded 67 ha (165 acres) with a mix of native species. This involved towing a specialised machine down the pre-prepared rows that creates a furrow and sows the seed within the furrow.
  • Planted 9,408 trees and shrubs across the sites with the help of our participants contributing 556 hours of volunteering

To our amazing supporters and donors, we would again like to say thank you! Without your support we cannot continue this critical project and help conserve Australia’s weird, wonderful and highly threatened native wildlife.

Volunteers tree planting at Salvana
Volunteers tree planting at Salvana
Salvana revegetation overview map
Salvana revegetation overview map
RTBC flock flies overhead during planting
RTBC flock flies overhead during planting


Aug 8, 2018

The Great Castor Oil Battle

Our community conservation teams have been out in force in Beeliar Regional Park this year, helping the City of Cockburn plant native species and remove invasive weeds around Bibra Lake.

Carnaby’s Cockatoos breed mainly in the inland agricultural areas of southern Western Australia, but they generally move closer to the coast from early summer to autumn. Their main remaining food source and roosting areas are on the Swan coastal plain in banksia and eucalypt woodlands, with Bibra Lake being an important nesting site for these cockatoos within the metropolitan region.

Invasive weeds are one of the largest threats to important habitat remnants, such as Bibra Lake, with introduced species being responsible for destroying native habitats by outcompeting the native vegetation.

One such invasive species is the Castor Oil, with large groves taking over the lakes banks, which are home to a variety of native mammals, reptiles and is an extremely important site for both native and migratory birds. Over two days in May, volunteers removed an incredible 6,075 square metres of dense Castor Oil, fighting off thorny Spear Thistle and collecting 18 kilograms of litter as they went.

The City’s Environmental Officers and bush crew were delighted with the volunteers’ efforts, commenting on what the large and passionate volunteer team were able complete in one day when it should have taken them a week. The Castor Oil Battle of May 2018 will forever be remembered by our volunteers, who, when asked if they would come back to help in the continuing war on weeds around Bibra Lake said, “Bring it on!”

Your very generous donations continue to allow us to engage the community in local conservation initiatives. We’d like to thank you, and all our supporters and volunteers who are passionate about making a difference for the local environment and our endangered native species. Further donations will allow us to continue this important work – please help us if you can.


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