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Media Release
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Dr David Kemp

6 September 2002

Over $28,000 to Help Protect SA's Threatened Species


The Prickly Raspwart, Fat-leaved Wattle, Black-eared Miner, Regent Parrot and Riverina Buloke Grassy Woodlands are among a number of nationally threatened species and ecological communities that stand a better chance of long-term survival after the announcement today of Commonwealth Government funding for South Australian community groups.

The Federal Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Dr David Kemp, today announced that four South Australian community groups received a total of $28,650 through the Natural Heritage Trust Threatened Species Network Community Grants Program to help protect the State’s rich biodiversity. In addition two groups received $27,300 for projects that cross State boundaries to protect threatened species in both South Australia and Victoria. Dr Kemp was represented by the Federal Parliamentary Secretary for Environment and Heritage, Dr Sharman Stone, at a special event at Melbourne Zoo today to announce the Grants.

“The Threatened Species Network Community Grants are a joint initiative of the Howard Government’s $2.7 billion Natural Heritage Trust and the World Wide Fund For Nature which are designed to assist in the fight to save our unique plants and animals,” Dr Kemp said.

“A total of 36 projects in urban and rural communities around Australia received funding of over $496,000 in the fifth round of the Threatened Species Network Community Grants. These projects will undertake conservation activities to benefit 51 plant and animal species and five ecological communities listed as nationally threatened under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999,” Dr Stone said.

Dr Kemp also said that these projects represent a community-level response to broader natural resource management issues and are a valuable way of capacity building for local communities and landholders throughout South Australia.

“For example, the Threatened Plant Action Group will use its grant of $23,200 to protect four species of orchids in South Australia and Victoria, two of which are listed as nationally threatened. The group will survey known sites and collate valuable information on threats, land use, critical habitat and key populations. Landholders will also be encouraged to protect populations located on private land,” Dr Kemp said.

“Two projects received Commonwealth funding totalling $21,500 to close artificial watering points within the habitat of a range of threatened birds. Artificial watering points threaten the Black-eared Miner and associated habitat degradation also threatens species such as the Malleefowl, Regent Parrot and Masked Owl. These projects will dramatically reduce the impact of domestic stock, as well as feral goats and kangaroos.

“Birds Australia will use their grant to close the two remaining dams in the Gluepot Reserve, while the Australian Landscape Trust will reduce the number of artificial watering points within the critical habitat of the endangered Black-eared Miner around Calperum and Taylorville stations.

“The work of these community groups complements the work of thousands of Natural Heritage Trust projects across the country that have Commonwealth Government support in protecting threatened species through on-ground activities such as feral animal control and habitat restoration.”

WWF Australia Chief Executive Officer Dr David Butcher said a significant component in the success of the Threatened Species Network Community Grants was the contribution of local communities around Australia.

“Community involvement in threatened species conservation is crucial to the survival of Australia's unique animals, plants and ecosystems. These grants are a vital step toward encouraging communities to step into the role of custodians of their local environment. The impact of community participation in conservation work cannot be underestimated,” Dr Butcher said.

Today’s announcement is particularly timely with tomorrow being National Threatened Species Day. This annual awareness-raising event is held on 7 September to commemorate the day that the last Tasmanian Tiger died in captivity in 1936.

A full list of South Australian projects funded through the Natural Heritage Trust Threatened Species Network Community Grants in 2002-03 is attached.

To obtain a copy of the National Threatened Species Day information kit please contact free-call 1800 803 772 or for further information please visit the Environment Australia web site at: www.ea.gov.au/tsd.

Media contacts:
Devena Wahlstrom Dr Kemp's office (02) 6277 7640 or 0412 257 334
Rosslyn Beeby WWF (02) 9281 5515 or 0419 520 960

Related Information

Commonwealth of Australia