Taronga has recently finished development of a 110-hectare breeding sanctuary for the Greater Bilby at Taronga Western Plains Zoo. The Greater Bilby is an iconic, threatened marsupial that was once widespread throughout arid and semi-arid Australia, including NSW. However, due to habitat loss and introduced predators and herbivores, sadly the Greater Bilby has been locally extinct in NSW for more than a century.
The sanctuary aims to provide a safe location in which extensive fencing will prevent introduced predators such as cats and foxes from gaining access.
An initial introduction of approximately 10 Greater Bilbies is planned for Autumn 2018. In ideal conditions, a female Greater Bilby can produce up to eight joeys per year, and we're anticipating the population will grow quickly. The TWPZ Sanctuary bilby population will support reintroductions to the wild and is a partner in the Wild Deserts project, which will bring back seven locally extinct mammals to Sturt National Park, located in north west NSW.
Taronga is dedicating the next 10 years to the conservation of 10 critical species, one of which is the Greater Bilby. It's the beginning of a long-term commitment to secure a future for these legacy species, and help them to not only survive, but thrive.
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