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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

7 September 2001

COMMONWEALTH SUPPORT FOR THREATENED SPECIES


Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill today boosted the ongoing survival chances for more than 150 threatened species by announcing Federal Government funding of over $520,000.

Senator Hill said the funding for the Threatened Species Network Community Grants Program, a joint initiative of the Federal Government's $2.5 billion Natural Heritage Trust and the World-Wide Fund For Nature (WWF), would help conserve Australia's precious wildlife.

"This latest round of projects to win funding complement more than 10,000 Natural Heritage Trust projects around the country that have Commonwealth Government support in protecting species through work like feral animal control or habitat restoration," Senator Hill said.

"The Threatened Species Network Community Grants are a vital component in the fight to save threatened species - they not only assist in saving our unique flora and fauna but also reward community groups with the recognition they deserve.

"The announcement of $521,512 for 40 community projects is timely, today being National Threatened Species Day. This awareness-raising event is held annually on 7 September, the day the last Tasmanian Tiger died in captivity in 1936.

"This is the fourth round of the Grants and the projects and this year's funding will support work to protect a wide range of wildlife and ecological communities, including the Southern Cassowary, Brush-tailed Rock Wallaby, Bronzeback Legless Lizard, Crimson Spider Orchid and the Hairy Anchor Plant.

"The approved projects will survey almost 560,000ha of habitat and improve habitat management on over 714,000ha. On-ground activities include fencing, revegetation, feral animal and weed control and closing artificial watering points.

"Two of the projects also provide opportunities to combine knowledge from traditional land owners with modern conservation methods to control feral animals on arid lands.

"It is a great pleasure to be working with the WWF on species conservation and I look forward to the continued success of this joint program," Senator Hill said.

WWF Australia CEO, Dr David Butcher said the projects funded by the TSN community grants should serve as an inspiration to increase the engagement of all Australians in conservation activities.

"WWF believes that the conservation - and ultimate survival - of Australia's incredible range of unique species will only occur if we can fully engage the Australian community. These grants are an important vehicle in generating the widespread community enthusiasm we will need to preserve the animals and plants of which we are all custodians," he said.

For further information on National Threatened Species Day events and on-ground activities in each State contact the TSN on 1800 684 447 or visit the website at www.nccnsw.org.au/members/tsn

7 September 2001

Contacts:
Belinda Huppatz (Senator Hill) (02) 6277 7640 or 0419 258 364
Rosslyn Beeby (WWF) (02) 9281 5515 or 0419 520 960


THREATENED SPECIES NETWORK GRANT RECIPIENTS

For further information on any of the projects listed here or to get in contact with proponents, please contact the National Threatened Species Network coordinator:
Amanda Nickson, WWF
Ph: (02) 9281 5515
Fax: (02) 9281 1060
Email: ANickson@wwf.org.au

NEW SOUTH WALES

Project Title: Friends of the Warrumbungle Brush-tailed Rock-Wallaby
Grant: $18,000
Proponent: Coonabarabran and Upper Castlereagh Catchment and Landcare Group Inc
Project Summary: This project will conduct humane fox baiting over one year on up to 70 properties within an area surrounding a colony of the nationally Vulnerable Brush-tailed Rock-wallaby. The intention is to create a fox free buffer zone to ensure that this threatened population recovers. This project extends and enhances the systematic baiting carried out in Warrumbungle National Park by the National Parks and Wildlife Service. In addition, the project will establish better collaboration between landholders and management authorities for Brush-tailed Rock-wallaby conservation.

Project Title: Restoration of Habitat for an Endangered Population of Squirrel Gliders
Grant: $11,500
Proponent: Wagga Wagga Urban Landcare Group
Project Summary: The Squirrel Glider population at Wagga Wagga is being used as a model for conservation work on several nationally and State-listed threatened species in the region. In the short term, immediate habitat enhancement will fix the present habitat deficiencies. In the longer term, the development and implementation of management guidelines and a possible conservation agreement will ensure habitat protection for a range of species.

Project Title: Mt. Gibraltar Reserve Threat Abatement Project
Grant: $5000
Proponent: Mt. Gibraltar Reserve Threat Abatement Project
Project Summary: The project aims to protect the State-listed eucalypt forest-woodland ecological community in the Mount Gilbraltar Forest. The intention is to remove weeds over 1ha of the steeper slopes so as to promote natural regeneration at this site. There is also an opportunity to raise awareness about this site via brochures, media releases, talks and displays. The project activities would be the first recovery initiatives to be implemented from the recovery plan, due out next year.

NORTHERN TERRITORY

Project Title: Conservation of Threatened Species Around Nyirripi Community
Grant: $15,000
Proponent: Tangentyere Council Inc.
Project Summary: This project examines the use of Aboriginal predator and fire management to protect threatened fauna in the Tanami Desert, including the Bilby, the Great Desert Skink and the Mulgara. Hunting will take place in two trial areas and the population levels of threatened fauna will be compared to population levels in two similar areas where hunting does not take place. This project combines research with on-ground outcomes, and has the potential to play an important role in developing an effective low-cost model for predator control around threatened species populations.

QUEENSLAND

Project Title: A Regional Recovery Plan for the False Water Rat
Grant: $20,000
Proponent: Wildlife Preservation Society of Qld. (Head Office)
Project Summary: This project focuses on developing a South-east Queensland Regional Recovery Plan for the False Water Rat. This activity builds upon a previous Threatened Species Network Community Grant, which surveyed and monitored the species. The project also aims to achieve broader biodiversity benefits for regionally significant coastal wetlands. It is an excellent possible flagship for coastal management and protection - in particular intertidal and freshwater wetlands.

Project Title: A Community-Based Recovery Plan for the Bulloak Jewel Butterfly
Grant: $10,000
Proponent: The Hut Environmental & Community Association Inc. (THECA)
Project Summary: The Bulloak Jewel Butterfly occurs at only one locality in Queensland, covering about 12km2, mostly among roadside vegetation. This project will undertake population surveys and examine a range of recovery options. This project creates an opportunity for on-ground action and community involvement and awareness raising in relation to invertebrate species.

Project Title: Pilot Mary River Turtle Conservation Project
Grant: $30,000
Proponent: Greening Australia
Project Summary: A few decades ago Mary River Turtles nested in great numbers, however, the last known survey found only 13 nesting females. This pilot project aims to initiate conservation and management strategies to help save this endangered turtle. Co-operation between the community and scientists will help to protect three of the most productive nesting sites, and work will be undertaken to artificially incubate some clutches. Data collected will be help to provide guidance for future turtle conservation works.

Project Title: Spectacled Flying Fox (SFF) Project
Grant: $18,500
Proponent: Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland
Project Summary: The Spectacled Flying Fox population has suffered a significant decline. The Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland, alongside the community, will conduct a population census of the species, and examine ways of locating Spectacled Flying Fox colonies.

Project Title: Eastern Bristlebird - Community, Habitat and Management Project
Grant: $13,000
Proponent: Birds Queensland
Project Summary: 'Hands-on' community and landholder participation will help to increase the quantity and quality of habitats, both on public and private lands, available for the critically endangered Eastern Bristlebird in Queensland. This project has a regional focus, and aims to increase community awareness of the problems faced by this species and the threats to its habitat.

Project Title: Kin Kin and Upper Pinbarren Creeks Revegetation Program
Grant: $20,000
Proponent: Save Today Our Parkland (STOP)
Project Summary: The Save Today Our Parkland community group in Queensland will restore and expand habitat at three sites near Kin Kin in the Noosa Shire. This restoration will benefit an endangered regional ecosystem and a suite of threatened plants and animals, including the Coxen's Fig-Parrot, the Powerful Owl and the Richmond Birdwing Butterfly. Ongoing monitoring will provide more valuable records of these species and assist in gauging the success of the revegetation program.

Project Title: Community Catchment Management for Threatened Species and Ecological Communities
Grant: $14,000
Proponent: Whites Hill - Pine Mountain Community Group Inc & Bulimba Creek Catchment Co-ordinating Committee Inc
Project Summary: Bulimba Creek catchment is a complex natural system comprised of major bushland reserves linked through natural corridors to the main creek system. Habitat loss and fragmentation affect many of the species found in the system, including the threatened Eprapah Wattle, the Macadamia and the Powerful Owl. The focus of these two community groups is to protect and restore threatened species and ecological communities at a catchment level, in conjunction with private landholders.

Project Title: Protection, Enhancement and Restoration of Key Cassowary Habitat in Cardwell Shire
Grant: $25,000
Proponent: Conservation Volunteers Australia
Project Summary: The Southern Cassowary, which can be found in the lowland coastal rainforests of far north Queensland, is threatened by habitat fragmentation. The remaining habitat patches in the Mission Beach/Tully region are becomingly increasingly susceptible to invasion by weeds, which, in turn, reduces the amount of food plants available for the cassowary. The Cardwell Shire Council, along with the Cassowary Advisory Group and Conservation Volunteers Australia, will undertake a planning project to identify areas of remnant vegetation on private land, and will seek to halt the process of degradation in some strategic sites and maintain habitat corridors between the coastal strip and the ranges to the west.

SOUTH AUSTRALIA

Project Title: Traditional Land Management to Protect Malleefowl in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Lands, SA
Grant: $19,000
Proponent: Anangu Pitjantjatjara Inc.
Project Summary: This project aims to identify and protect critical habitat for nationally Vulnerable Malleefowl in the South Australian Anangu-Pitjantjatjara lands, and to trial the integration of traditional and western species conservation techniques. Because altered fire regimes threaten the Malleefowl, this project aims to reinstate, or assist with the continuation of traditional burning regimes on spinifex grasslands adjoining critical habitat areas.

Project Title: Lanky's Well and Woolley's Lake Weeding Program
Grant: $1400
Proponent: Beachport District Development Association (BDDA)
Project Summary: Group members of the Beach District Development Association will be trained in minimum impact bush weeding techniques. This training will then be used to conduct weeding activities at two locations containing the endangered Little Dip Spider Orchid. Representative orchid populations will also be monitored at both sites. There are many other plants of regional conservation significance at this site which will benefit from the weeding program.

Project Title: Interim Recovery Planning for 11 Nationally Threatened Plants, Kangaroo Island
Grant: $40,000
Proponent: Threatened Plant Action Group (TPAG)
Project Summary: This project aims to develop interim recovery plans for 11 nationally threatened plants, including the Kangaroo Island Spider Orchid, Twining Finger Flower, Osborne's Eyebright and the Small-flowered Daisy-Bush. The threats and status of each species will be assessed in the field and used to prioritise strategic on-ground recovery works and direct future recovery efforts. Strong partnerships between eight community groups, the Kangaroo Island Council and National Parks and Wildlife South Australia will be developed in order to carry out weed control, seed collection and planting, and site protection.

Project Title: Ticklebelly Hill Threatened Species Project - Protecting the Silverleaf Daisy
Grant: $1900
Proponent: Australian Plant Society - Eastern Eyre Peninsula Group
Project Summary: A population of at least 60 vulnerable Silverleaf Daisy or Velvet Daisybush (Olearia pannosa ssp pannosa) individuals found on a Council reserve in South Australia are threatened by 4WDs, trail bikes and weeds. The Ticklebelly Hill Threatened Species Project will address these threats, raise awareness of the importance of biodiversity and of protecting threatened species, and provides an excellent opportunity for community participation in threatened species conservation.

Project Title: Great Desert Skink Management on the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Lands, SA
Grant: $14,000
Proponent: Anangu Pitjantjatjara Inc. (AP)
Project Summary: This projects aims to protect populations of the threatened Tjakura, or Great Desert Skink, through land management practices such as traditional patch burning, and the testing of a bounty system for hunting feral cats and foxes. Strong community involvement will facilitate the search for new populations on the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Lands (AP Lands) in South Australia using traditional ecological knowledge, vegetation maps and fire history data. As new populations are discovered the habitat will be evaluated to add to information on critical habitat.

Project Title: Recovery of the Eyre Peninsula Southern Emu-wren
Grant: $10,000
Proponent: Southern Eyre Birds Inc.
Project Summary: A recent fire caused local extinction of two sub-populations of the threatened Eyre Peninsula Southern Emu-wren. This project will search for the Southern Emu-wren species at known and potential locations, assess habitat requirements and threats, prepare a draft Recovery Plan, establish a monitoring program for the subspecies, including assessing whether birds re-colonise the recently burnt sites, and convene a locally-based recovery Team to manage the project.

Project Title: Improving the Conservation Status of the Bronzeback Legless Lizard
Grant: $2300
Proponent: South Australian Herpetology Group
Project Summary: The Bronzeback Legless Lizard has been found in less than 10 localities, all located in the far north of South Australia. However, the known range and habitat preference of the animal suggests that it may be much more abundant than available records suggest. This project aims to improve the conservation status of this vulnerable reptile by finding new records of the species within its known range. Publicity associated with this project will also increase public awareness of the species and other declining reptiles in the pastoral zone.

Project Title: Endangered Species Monitoring in the Arid Recovery Reserve
Grant: $3900
Proponent: Friends of the Arid Recovery Project
Project Summary: A trial reintroduction of the nationally Endangered Western-barred Bandicoot has taken place at Arid Recovery Reserve, Roxby Downs, and is anticipated that breeding will soon commence. The Friends of the Arid Recovery Project community group will undertake monitoring of this population, helping to improve its chance of recovery.

Project Title: Mt Lofty Ranges Declining Bird Task Force - Support
Grant: $6390
Proponent: Conservation Council of SA
Project Summary: The Mt Lofty Ranges contain a wonderful diversity of habitats and one of the largest concentrations of threatened bird taxa (around 20) on mainland, including the Glossy Black Cockatoo, the Southern Emu-Wren, the Malleefowl and the Regent Honeyeater. This project aims to identify declining species of birds in the Mt Lofty Ranges, critical habitat and significant impacts, gaps in management knowledge, and recommend priorities for better management.

Project Title: Where is the Western Whipbird?
Grant: $2500
Proponent: Friends of Innes National Park
Project Summary: This project will determine the status and distribution of the nationally Vulnerable Western Whipbird on southern Yorke Peninsula, which is threatened by land clearing and fire. The project also aims to increase community awareness of biodiversity issues, establish baseline data to assess future changes in the distribution of the population, and provide critical information for appropriate park and fire management activities.

Project Title: Community Volunteers Monitoring Threats to Black-eared Miners
Grant: $13,122
Proponent: Birds Australia Gluepot Reserve
Project Summary: Birds Australia will be working to coordinate large numbers of community volunteers to monitor the use of artificial nesting sites by mallee birds, including the nationally Endangered Black-eared Miner and Yellow-throated Miner. The aim of this project is to demonstrate the effectiveness of some types of artificial nesting, and to assist conservation of Black-Eared Miners.

TASMANIA

Project Title: Threatened Species of Glenorchy: On-ground Protection/Strategic Planning
Grant: $5000
Proponent: Glenorchy Precinct Committees
Project Summary: This project is tied in with the Glenorchy City Council's Threatened Species Management Strategy. It will undertake essential on-ground protection of nationally listed species, including the Basalt Peppercress, Curly Sedge and Clasping-leaf Heath, and assist with the development of management plans for threatened species habitat within the municipality. The aim of the strategy is to integrate threatened species protection and community action with council development and approval processes.

Project Title: Long-tailed Spider Orchid: On-ground Protection at Austins Ferry
Grant: $4000
Proponent: Stony Point Bushcare Group
Project Summary: This project aims to protect a population of Long-tailed Spider Orchids (Caladenia caudata) located in a patch of urban bushland which is currently used for recreational purposes. It will provide immediate, long-term protection by fencing off the population, removing weeds, raising community awareness and producing a management plan.

Project Title: Successfully Managing Plomleys Trapdoor Spider and the Cataract Gorge Snail
Grant: $4500
Proponent: Launceston Environment Centre Inc.
Project Summary: Plomleys Trapdoor Spider is an endemic spider with a very restricted distribution. Only five females have been found in the area so far. Although the general habitat is woodland, the spider needs a discrete micro environment of lush, mossy boulders in creeklines and gorges with a southerly aspect. Another endemic species with a very limited distribution - the Cataract Gorge Snail - is also found in the same mossy boulder environs within the same restricted area. The project seeks to properly secure the area as a reserve under the National Parks Act and to manage the various weeds that are threatening the mossy habitats.

VICTORIA

Project Title: Protection & Enhancement of Threatened Species Habitat in the Goldfield Bioregion - Bendigo South Zone
Grant: $30,000
Proponent: Community groups in the Bendigo South Zone including Tree Project, Upper Spring Creek Landcare Group, Ravenswood Valley Landcare Group, North Harcourt/Sedgwick Landcare Group
Project Summary: Community Groups in the region will act to protect and enhance the habitat of a range of threatened species, including the Swift Parrot and Endangered McIvor Spider Orchid and the Vulnerable Pink-tailed Worm Lizard. They will also be working to protect threatened ecological communities, including Creekline Grassy Woodland, Alluvial Terraces and the Temperate Woodland Bird Community. On-ground works include integrated control of predators and weeds, habitat restoration and enhancing community participation. The project is an excellent example of good integrated community involvement in regional planning and on-ground action.

Project Title: Protection & Enhancement of Threatened Species Habitat in the Goldfields Bioregion - Castlemaine Zone
Grant: $45,000
Proponent: Community groups in the Castlemaine Zone
Project Summary: Community groups in the Castlemaine area of the Goldfields Bioregion will act to secure the habitat of a range of threatened flora and fauna, including the Endangered Purple Eyebright, and to protect threatened ecological communities including Creekline Grassy Woodland, Herb-rich Woodland and the Temperate Woodland Bird Community. Key aspects of the project are integrated control of predators and weeds, habitat restoration and enhancing community participation.

Project Title: Restoration of Degraded Mosslands in the Victorian Alps
Grant: $9000
Proponent: Bogong High Plains Restoration Alliance
Project Summary: This project will help to conserve one of the most important and fragile plant communities in the Victorian Alps. The community group involved will use on-ground rehabilitation and restoration techniques and will train Park rangers in the use of these techniques. In the longer term this project will lead to a better appreciation and recognition of the value of Mosslands in the Victorian Alps and the need for their sustainable management.

Project Title: Striped Legless Lizard Habitat Enhancement: Yea Cemetery and Local Roadsides
Grant: $4900
Proponent: Upper Goulburn Catchment Group
Project Summary: The Striped Legless Lizard, Delmar impar, is classified as nationally Vulnerable and is known to occur in various native grassland and grassy woodland sites in the Alexandra area, including the old Yea cemetery and roadsides between Yea and Mansfield with suitable habitat. This project aims to enhance the known habitat through removal of weeds, community education, monitoring/survey work and encouraging private landholders to maintain existing habitats on their lands. This project involves a good collaboration between a range of community groups and the Department of Natural Resources and Energy.

WESTERN AUSTRALIA

Project Title: Protecting the Habitat of the Red-tailed Phascogale
Grant: $20,000
Proponent: King-Murray Rocks Catchment Group
Project Summary: This projects aims to ensure the long-term survival of the nationally Endangered Red-tailed Phascogale, a small marsupial mouse which is threatened by predation, habitat loss and fragmentation. It is hoped this project will set a precedent in incorporating threatened species targets into broader catchment planning programs.

Project Title: Newdegate Fox Control Project
Grant: $2500
Proponent: Newdegate Land Conservation District Committee
Project Summary: This fox baiting program aims to protect populations of threatened species found in the Newdegate area, including the Malleefowl, the Numbat and the Red-tailed Phascogale. The project will work in conjunction with the WA Department of Conservation and Land Management, which baits nearby nature reserves. It aims to create awareness and encourage landholders to continue fox baiting to protect threatened species into the future.

Project Title: Survey and Translocation of the Critically Endangered Whorled Emu-Bush
Grant: $3500
Proponent: Newdegate Land Conservation District Committee (LCDC)
Project Summary: The nationally Endangered Whorled Emu-Bush (Eremophila verticillata) is an erect woody shrub with small flowers which is endemic to the Newdegate area. Only two populations remain with a total of around 570 plants, and they are threatened by adjacent mining activities, weed invasion, salinity and road maintenance. The project will conduct surveys for new populations and suitable translocation sites, and will be undertaken in partnership with the WA Department of Conservation and Land Management.

Project Title: Unravelling the Mysteries of Pilbara Olive Python Ecology
Grant: $7000
Proponent: Nickol Bay Naturalists' Club
Project Summary: This project builds on a previous Threatened Species Network Community Grant that documented the ecology of the nationally Vulnerable Pilbara Olive Python on the Burrup Peninsula and raised community awareness of this species. Scientists and the community will work together to study unknown aspects of the python's ecology, particularly the reproductive cycle and nest site location. The project will contribute to effective protection and recovery of the species, be valuable in updating the Action Plan for Australian Reptiles, and can be used in formalising a recovery plan.

Project Title: Translocation of the Critically Endangered Bailey's Symonanthus (Symonanthus bancroftii) Population
Grant: $6000
Proponent: Bruce Rock Land Conservation District Committee
Project Summary: The Critically Endangered Bailey's Symonanthus is a small shrub with many stems, and there is only one plant and two sets of tissue known to be in existence. Through community partnerships, this project aims to establish two new populations of the Symonanthus on two separate crown reserves, using field plantings of cloned (micropropagated) plants. It is thought this project is a first in reconstructing a population from a single set of parents.

Project Title: Rehabilitating Critically Endangered Communities in the Swan Region
Grant: $16,000
Proponent: Conservation Volunteers Australia
Project Summary: This project will contribute to the rehabilitation of critically endangered Sedgelands occurring behind coastal dunes and Eucalyptus calophylla in the Kingia Australia woodlands. Both of these are susceptible to inappropriate fire regimes, dieback, weed infestation and fragmentation. This project builds on the successful efforts of a Green Corps project entitled 'Restoring Ecological Communities on the Swan Coastal Plain'.

Project Title: Eremophila nivea Habitat Reconstruction
Grant: $6300
Proponent: Conservation Volunteers Australia
Project Summary: Eremophila nivea (a medium sized shrub with branches and leaves covered with distinctive woolly silvery-coloured hairs) is ranked as Critically Endangered due to the severe fragmentation of populations and a decline in the area, extent and quality of habitat. Approximately 450 individual plants have been found in seven populations north of Three Springs in Western Australia. Building on work undertaken in 1997, this project intends to improve the habitat quality and provide protection against salinity at one of these populations through reintroducing endemic plant species, weed control and fencing an area of remnant vegetation in the drainage line.

Project Title: Designated Access Paths for Bob Blackburn Flora Reserve
Grant: $4300
Proponent: Friends of Bob Blackburn Flora Reserve (Inc.)
Project Summary: The Friends of Bob Blackburn Flora Reserve (Inc) group is constructing access paths through the reserve and erecting signs providing information about flora, fauna and educational issues. The project is a high-exposure educational activity encouraging greater understanding and awareness of the area's importance. The construction of a limestone path has another benefit - limiting spores, which cause dieback in trees, being carried into healthy areas of the reserve on visitors' shoes.

Project Title: Assessing Ampurta and Other Threatened Species Populations in Western Desert Regions
Grant: $19,000
Proponent: Arid Lands Environment Centre
Project Summary: Assisted by traditional owners from nearby communities, a three week survey along the Canning Stock Route in WA aims to gather information on the distribution, status and habitat requirements of threatened Ampurta and Mulgara. The information obtained will be essential to the formulation of a joint national recovery plan for both species, and will also provide information for other nationally threatened species, including Bilbies, Marsupial Moles and the Great Desert Skink.

Project Title: Managing Southern Bilby Populations on the Ngaanyatjarra Lands
Grant: $20,000
Proponent: Ngaanyatjarra Council
Project Summary: This project involves surveying and monitoring the Vulnerable Ninu (bilby) populations around Tjirrkarli and Warburton communities and assessing the impacts of predation and fire. Hunting and humane baiting will be trialled as methods of predator control, and patch burning to improve habitat quality will also be tested. This project is expected to be very important in managing the populations.

Commonwealth of Australia