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Taronga begins new partnerships to support the Bilby

Taronga’s latest Bilby projects and our efforts to protect other endangered species will be highlighted at this year’s National Threatened Species Day on 7 September. 

Guests can also make a pledge at the Main Entry and speak to YATZ and volunteers about ways they can help local wildlife in their area. 

Recently Taronga has begun conservation partnerships with Save the Bilby Fund and Australian Wildlife Conservancy to support the plight of our native Bilby.

Taronga Life Sciences, Research and Conservation Coordinator, Monique Van Sluys, said: “The field project developed in agreement with Save the Bilby Fund will focus on running a population and habitat viability analysis for Queensland Bilbies.”

The science-based conservation action plan will steer the direction for Queensland Bilby recovery over the next 5-10 years.

The second partnership with Australian Wildlife Conservancy is a three-year plan, with funding going towards monitoring of wildlife and ongoing management of Scotia Sanctuary, a nature reserve in the south-western plains of NSW.

“The activities supported in subsequent years will depend on a grant’s application at NSW National Parks for building predator-free sanctuaries in NSW,” said Monique.

The Greater Bilby once occupied a large portion of arid and semi-arid Australia. Sadly, there has been a catastrophic decline in their population over the last 200 years.

Learn more about National Threatened Species Day here

Taronga’s Zoomobile will make an appearance at the annual National Threatened Species Day event held in Martin Place on Friday September 5.


10 Things You May Not Know About Bilbies 

  1. Bilbies are nocturnal omnivorous marsupials, belonging to the bandicoot family
  2. The Bilby’s correct name is actually the Greater Bilby. Sadly its cousin, the Lesser Bilby, is believed to be extinct
  3. Like all marsupials, female Bilbies have a pouch to carry their young; however the Bilby’s pouch is backwards! This is to prevent dirt from getting in when they are burrowing
  4. Bilbies build extensive tunnel systems and live underground, only surfacing at night to search for food
  5. The Bilby’s large ears not only provide them with exceptional hearing, but also keep them warm
  6. A Bilby’s snout is long, pink and hairless and gives them an acute sense of smell
  7. While the Bilby has excellent hearing and smelling senses, its eyesight is rather poor
  8. Bilbies are critically endangered, particularly in Queensland
  9. Eating a Pink Lady or Haigh’s chocolate Easter Bilby rather than an Easter Bunny helps raise money and awareness for Bilby conservation
  10. There have been a number of children’s books written about our native Bilbies. They include: Bilby Moon by Margaret Spurling, Bilby Secrets by Edel Wignell and The Bilbies’ First Easter by Irena Sibley
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