Monday, January 13, 2020

NSW's Food Drop Initiative

A kookaburra (Genus: Dacelo; Family: Alcedinidae) surveys the destruction on the NSW South Coast, Australia.

An injured koala (Scientific name: Phascolarctos cinereus) being treated on Friday at the Kangaroo Island Wildlife Zoo in South Australia

The devastation to Australia's wildlife has attracted international attention, with footage of rescue attempts of injured koalas and other animals being shared in news reports and social media. 

I too had blogged about it on January 03. 

Anyway, over the past week, even as the fires continue to burn, it was reported that NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service have started dropping food, mostly sweet potatoes and carrots for endangered brush-tailed rock-wallabies (Scientific name: Petrogale penicillata) in fire-affected areas across the state. 

A National Parks and Wildlife Service helicopter prepares for the food drop 

Endangered brush-tailed rock-wallabies in fire-affected areas have received a food drop of carrots and sweet potatoes. 

The state Environment Minister Matthew Kean explained the food drops form part of a state-wide scheme addressing post-fire survival and recovery of endangered species. 

He said that food drops are expected to continue until "sufficient natural food resources and water" become available again. 

Additionally, intensive feral predator control will occur as required, and cameras will monitor the uptake of food and the number and variety of animals. 

Whilst the advice is normally to not feed wildlife, the "rare situation" of both severe drought and bushfires means that "desperate times call for desperate measures", Australian Conservation Foundation Nature Campaigner Jess Abrahams said. 

However, he reminded that feed droppings were a short-term measure because it is unsustainable to allow wildlife to become dependent on human feeding.

Nonetheless, it is really comforting to know that the animals are not forgotten.

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