The Federal Government has announced the appointment of a National Species Coordinator to manage the long-term recovery of a number of species impacted by the black summer bushfires – with the role to manage state and local efforts across all jurisdictions in a new $10 million program.
Minister for the Environment, Sussan Ley said the program will coordinate on-ground action such as habitat protection, pest animal control, monitoring and research and will directly assist the recovery of the platypus and other affected species.
“We know many areas were hit hard in the Black Summer bushfires and a staggering and distressing number of species were impacted, we need to continue to focus on those animals that are struggling to recover,” Minister Ley said.
“The species that will benefit from this funding were drawn from the Wildlife and Threatened Species Bushfire Recovery Expert Panel’s list of species that required assistance following the fires and includes five mammals, three birds and a group of Alpine reptiles,” she said.
“While many species have benefited from funding under the Morrison Government’s bushfire response package, we know a number of them occur across multiple jurisdictions and require a national, collaborative effort to support their recovery.
“This funding will see new working groups formed to identify the priority locations and recovery actions for the selected species, comprised of government and non-government organisations, scientists, species experts, landholders, and natural resource managers.
“By joining forces to take a national approach to their recovery, we are giving these priority species the best chance for recovery and driving collaboration and partnerships across the species’ range.”
Each species will receive between $500,000 to $1 million for recovery activities with a species coordinator appointed for each species to lead recovery efforts.
The priority species and their newly appointed coordinators are:
• Grey-headed Flying-fox (NSW Government);
• Brush-tailed rock-wallaby (NSW Government);
• Spotted Quoll, South East Mainland population (Victorian Government);
• Long-nosed Potoroo, South East Mainland population (Victorian Government);
• Platypus (Victorian Government);
• Eastern Bristlebird (Birdlife Australia);
• Gang Gang Cockatoo (ACT Government);
• Mainland Glossy Black Cockatoo (Birdlife Australia);
• Gliders (Greater Glider and Yellow-bellied Glider) (Victorian Government);
• Alpine Reptiles (Victorian Government).
The Minister said recovery actions identified by the species coordinators and working groups will build upon activities that are already underway for these species in specific areas and will be delivered over the next 15 months, making a tangible difference to the species recovery.