Laura Hillis Senior Corporate Affairs Consultant
Thursday 7 September marked National Threatened Species Day. This annual date commemorates the death of the last remaining Tasmanian Tiger. In the late 1800s the species were culled as they were thought of as a pest, and by the 1920s Tasmanian Tigers were endangered. In 1928 a reserve was recommended to protect these species, but by then it was too late. The last of the species died at Hobart Zoo on 7 September 1936.
Today, habitat destruction, predation by non-native species and climate change all pose risks to many Australian animals. At Bank Australia, we believe that protecting our native flora and fauna is important, and we all have a part to play. Yes, even your bank.
The Bank Australia Conservation Reserve is 927 hectares of protected biodiverse Australian bushland that offers a home to over 200 native animals . Thanks to recent work completed by Greening Australia we can now confirm that it is home to thirteen native threatened animals.
Since our first steps into conservation with the purchase of our Minimay property in 2008, the bank and our partners have always known that it was highly likely a number of threatened species lived on the reserve. Sightings of animals like the charismatic South Eastern Red Tailed Black Cockatoo, the pretty Diamond Firetail and the Growling Grass Frog gave us hope that the revegetation work on the reserve was providing homes for these species.
But in order to protect the species better and to track our progress, we needed to know for sure which animals and how many, are living on the three properties that make up the Bank Australia Conservation Reserve. That’s why in the first half of 2017, Greening Australia’s conservation scientists spent several months developing an intensive monitoring program to track numbers and types of animals on the reserve.
After several months of monitoring, Greening Australia reported back that 270 native animal species were found on the Reserve, 13 of which are threatened species. Here are a few of the species that have been found:
- Fiery Jewel Butterfly
- Bearded Dragon
- South Eastern Red Tailed Black Cockatoo
- Growling Grass Frog
Conservation and the protection of threatened species is not something that can be achieved alone – for us to make a tangible difference we know we need to have partnerships with some of the best conservation leaders in Australia. This is why we are working with Greening Australia and Trust for Nature.
Beyond our partnerships, we also need a clear plan and vision for the future. That’s why in early October we will be unveiling a vision for the Bank Australia Conservation Reserve informed by world-leading conservation science and developed over nearly a year working with our partners and other stakeholders.
But conservation requires more than organisations, it also involves people. That’s why we’re committed to involving our customers, staff and the local community in our conservation reserve project as well – because we need to love wild places and wild animals to want to protect them.
We’re excited to share more about our vision in October and how we plan to protect threatened species for generations to come. Learn more about the Conservation Reserve here.
Photo credit: Ian Morgan