Last year provided us with much to be proud of and I would like to acknowledge the NESP TSR Hub’s significant contribution to the national effort. So much
of this work is directly relevant to the Threatened Species Strategy and helps me make the best decisions and investments possible.
The Strategy celebrated its first year of implementation last year and I am pleased to report that through our collective national effort, including the work of the Hub, we have met the majority of the Strategy’s targets for year one and are delivering some great outcomes for our threatened species.
The Hub has gone from strength to strength and is producing world-class science that informs my decisions, as well as the practitioners, managers and decision makers who are working to better understand, manage and conserve our threatened species.
There have been many highlights, but some that stand out include:
The first annual showcase held in Canberra that offered the Department of the Environment and Energy and a broader audience an insight into the wide-ranging and collaborative research underway in the Threatened Species Recovery Hub.
The tremendous results achieved by Professor Rob Heinsohn and his team to boost Swift Parrot breeding success.
Successful assisted climate change adaptation through the first translocation of the western swamp tortoise outside of their historical range.
We are now turning our attention to the years ahead and to meeting the Strategy’s challenging three and five year targets. The TSR Hub will continue to support decision-making, and the new Threatened Species Recovery Fund will open this year to help community groups undertake essential activities to protect and recover threatened species. We will be intensifying action where it is most needed, building the partnerships required to fight extinction and applying the knowledge gained in 2016 to enhance the effectiveness of the Strategy.
I am so proud and encouraged by the progress we have made in just one year and I am looking forward to continuing this important journey with Australia, and the Threatened Species Recovery Hub.
Threatened Species Commissioner
Top image: Gregory Andrews
One million species threatened with extinction worldwide. That was the attention-grabbing headline that recently (and, sadly, briefly) captured the world’s attention, when the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystems Services (IPBES) released its first global assessment of how the planet’s biodiversity is faring – and what that means for people.
The Alligator Rivers yellow chat is a small, bright yellow insectivorous bird of the Kakadu floodplains. This Endangered species is imperilled by habitat changes caused by altered fire regimes, buffalo and feral pigs, rising sea levels and the spread of weeds like prickly mimosa and introduced grasses. What has been happening to degrade these floodplains has been equally of concern to Traditional Owners as to yellow chat researchers.
The central purpose of the Threatened Species Recovery Hub is delivering research that is relevant for and useable by decision-makers, land managers and others responsible for recovering threatened species. Working with partners is vital if we’re to achieve this.
The native forest on Norfolk Island provides vital habitat for the island’s threatened plant and bird species, many of which are found nowhere else on the planet (also called endemic). When the British colonised Norfolk Island in 1788, they cleared much of the original vegetation. Remaining forest is now protected in the national park and reserves, but plant recruitment is poor and invasive non-native plant species would likely overtake the forest without the on-going efforts of park managers. To preserve remaining forest, it is important to determine the main causes of declines and the most effective actions that managers can take to address these threats and restore native vegetation.
The Threatened Species Recovery Hub is celebrating great conservation outcomes from projects taking place in Booderee National Park for two Endangered species: the eastern bristlebird and the southern brown bandicoot (eastern subspecies). The Australian National University’s David Lindenmayer and Chris MacGregor give us the scoop on the bristlebird and Natasha Robinson shares the good news about the southern brown bandicoot.