From the CEO - preventative conservation

Published 20 Jun 2018 

This special first-edition of the new-look Bush Tracks is dedicated to the countrywide effort being undertaken on our reserves to protect vital Australian species from extinction. Together we can keep native species thriving in our landscapes.

Gerard O'Neill. Photo Annette Ruzicka.
Gerard O'Neill. Photo Annette Ruzicka.
Welcome to the new-look bushtracks. Our team has been hard at work freshening up the layout and content of this magazine. In doing so we hope to provide a platform from which stories of our work and the bush can find more space to engage and inspire you. In an age in which so many different issues are constantly vying for people’s attention, it’s vital that we make sure the plight of the bush doesn’t get lost. Bushtracks is part of our dedication to ensuring that doesn’t happen.

Scientists are telling us the ‘sixth great species extinction’ is underway. Thousands of plants and animals, both common and threatened, are suffering population declines as their habitats shrink. Australia is one of the worst offenders – it's now ranked second in the world for biodiversity loss. If we are
to reverse, or at least halt this decline, we need to be smarter about our approach to conservation.

In this edition of bushtracks, we look at ‘preventative conservation’, and how it is being implemented across our reserves and partnership lands. Attempting to rebuild a landscape from scratch or save a species that's already on the brink of extinction requires an enormous amount of resources.

Storm clouds over Boolcoomatta. Photo Boris Hlavica.
Storm clouds over Boolcoomatta. Photo Boris Hlavica.
Sometimes this is necessary, particularly in the case of keystone species such as the Bilby, which if removed from a landscape would throw the metaphorical ecological scales out of balance. But a much more effective approach is to secure entire landscapes, return them to good health, and in doing so help to secure the futures of a whole host of species.

We’re seeing the benefits of this approach all over the country, from the return of the Western Brush Wallaby to our Fitz-Stirling reserves in Western Australia, to the success our partners have seen in transplanting the Stuart Mill Spider-orchid to J.C Griffin Reserve in Victoria.

I hope you enjoy the new bushtracks and the stories within.

Gerard O'Neill's signature

Gerard O’Neill, Chief Executive.

Bush gift cards
2017-18 Annual Report