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Volunteer caretakers sought for Maatsuyker Island

08/08/2008

The Parks and Wildlife Service is seeking self-sufficient volunteers able to withstand the buffeting Roaring Forties for a four or six month stint at Australia's southernmost lighthouse on Maatsuyker Island.

Parks and Wildlife Service general manager Peter Mooney said Maatsuyker, which is part of the Southwest National Park, was famous for its rugged setting 10 kilometres off the coast of Tasmania.

"Volunteers have been assisting the Parks and Wildlife Service in its management of the natural and cultural values of the island for a number of years and we are again seeking expressions of interest from people willing to undertake these duties during a four or six month placement on the island.

"The volunteers help to maintain the buildings and machinery on the remote island.

"Volunteers also work with the Bureau of Meteorology under a separate contract to carry out daily weather observations."

Mr Mooney said the volunteer caretaker program enabled people to contribute to the ongoing preservation of lighthouses and the islands on which they are located.

"Volunteer caretakers on Deal and Maatsuyker islands are very important in preserving the cultural heritage of the islands."

Mr Mooney said that people interested in the position should be aware that the weather on Maatsuyker was frequently cold, wet and windy, that the island had limited facilities and access was by helicopter only.

Further information can be obtained from Craig Saunders at Parks and Wildlife Service, Huonville, Tasmania on (03) 6264 8463, or by e-mailing Craig.Saunders@parks.tas.gov.au