By Tim Allard, Chief Executive Officer
In the previous edition of Wildlife Matters, I wrote about the United Nations Global Assessment report – how the report spoke to the dire situation facing more than one million species globally, and that Australia is leading the world in extinctions. Australia is a ‘mega-diverse’ country, one of very few countries to hold that description. Simply put, it means that much of Australia’s wildlife cannot be found anywhere else. Therefore, if we don’t act now to protect what we have – what makes Australia unique – it will be lost forever, consigned to the history books.
It is in our power to prevent this, and I am very proud that the AWC team is leading the way in securing the future of many of Australia’s threatened species through:
• Completion of the Newhaven Stage 1 fence, triggering the reintroduction of the Rufous Hare Wallaby (Mala);
• Completion of the Mallee Cliffs National Park fence, and release of the Greater Bilby into a specially designed breeding area;
• Scaling up of Australia’s largest ever reintroduction program; translocating threatened species to Mt Gibson, Newhaven, Pilliga, Mallee Cliffs and North Head;
• Developing innovative technological solutions that enhance our ability to monitor species; and
• Leading more than 30 scientific research projects, and collaborating on a further 100 research projects.
With the commencement of our new partnerships, we have substantially increased our land management programs of fire management, feral predator and feral herbivore control, and weed management, and progressed planning for new fenced area projects.
Our mission is precise: the effective conservation of all native Australian wildlife and their habitats.Our strategy to deliver this mission is clear:
• Deliver science-informed land management;
• Construct a network of large-scale fenced areas to secure the future of threatened species;
• Invest in strategic research; and
• Pursue long-term solutions to control key threats to wildlife, such as gene drive technology (in partnership with CSIRO).
This work is delivered by our dedicated and skilled team of ecologists and land managers. If you have had an opportunity to visit an AWC Sanctuary, I’m sure you would have been inspired by the passion of a team that understands the criticality of the AWC mission.
Similarly, we cannot fulfil our mission without your support. Whether you are a determined volunteer, or sharing the story of AWC with your friends and networks, or investing in AWC, you are an essential part of the AWC family.
Your support also enabled us to meet the fundraising challenge set by the generosity of the JAAM Foundation and the Martin Copley Will Trust, raising a total of $2,000,031. This is a fantastic result, and I thank you on behalf of the whole team at AWC.
In my last message I wrote that we can make a difference.
It is with your support that we are making a difference, securing the future for many of our unique and iconic species.
Thank you and have a safe and Merry Christmas.