Dozens of animals and plants join Australia’s threatened species list

What do tingle pygmy trapdoor spiders from Western Australia, silver-headed antechinus from central Queensland and Duramana fingers orchids from NSW have in common?

If you’re waiting for a funny punchline, sorry – the answer is that they’re among the 41 new species of Australian plants and animals that are now officially at risk of extinction.

Two species of antechinus – the silver-headed and black-tailed antechinus – were added to the threatened species list last week. The small, carnivorous marsupials are best known for their reproductive habits – males die after their once-in-a-lifetime mating frenzy.

Two species of antechinus – the silver-headed and black-tailed antechinus – were added to the threatened species list last week. The small, carnivorous marsupials are best known for their reproductive habits – males die after their once-in-a-lifetime mating frenzy. Photo: Gary Cranitch, Qld Museum

The good news though is that this listing could, potentially, be the first step towards reversing the country’s world-leading extinction rate.

Those 41 species were among 50 changes to the country’s official threatened species list after its annual update on Friday. Continue Reading →

Government flags ban on wildlife carers treating injured & orphaned kangaroos

An Australian state government wants to ban wildlife shelters from treating injured kangaroos, wombats, possums and cockatoos, claiming they’re “over-abundant” species.

Kanga pouch

The Victorian government has published a discussion paper outlining proposed changes to wildlife management regulations and is seeking public comment on the review.

It also flags a crackdown on wildlife carers releasing rehabilitated kangaroos and wombats on to their properties in rural areas, claiming this can result in ” unnaturally high concentrations of released wildlife” with  “significant impacts” for neighbours.

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Photo Competition

ANIMALS IN THE WILD PHOTO COMPETITION AND EXHIBITION 2018

An initiative of Greens MP David Shoebridge

Animals in the Wild is a much-loved celebration of nature in the wild, unthreatened, and unharmed by humans. We want to see your pictures of quokkas, wallabies, cockatoos, koalas and other beautiful Australian wildlife.

The competition is part of the Greens campaign against recreational hunting, and in particular, the Sporting Shooters Association arms fair ‘Huntfest’ which blights Narooma every year. Animals in the Wild encourages you to shoot with a camera, not a gun.

The winning entries will be announced in Eurobodalla on the weekend of the June long weekend.

Pests or pals? How to live in harmony with urban wildlife

Brushtail Possum in a boxCalamitous cockies, pushy possums and the odd snake: love them or loathe them, Australian cities are rich in native wildlife that’s adapted to an urban lifestyle.

And even though they can be annoying and often become pests — as anyone who has had possums living in their roof will attest — we can co-exist happily with our city-dwelling feathered, furry and scaly friends.

That’s right — even possums.

Here are a few ways to live alongside the animals on your doorstep without calling pest control every other day.

How do I stop possums nibbling on my herbs …

Boil chillies and garlic in water, let it cool, strain and pour it in a spray bottle, and spray your garden.

This stinky, spicy concoction will keep possums away, along with loads of other herb-chomping creatures, said Sarah Bekessy, an urban ecologist at RMIT in Melbourne.

The natural chemical weapon contains capsaicin from chilli, which is the active ingredient in pepper spray, and irritating sulphur-based garlic compounds, which can kill insects on contact.

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