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PWS - Fires update and impacts


Background: A number of fires were ignited by dry lightning that crossed the state in late December 2018 and mid-January 2019. The storms of 15 January 2019 resulted in approximately 2,400 lightning strikes and caused over 60 new ignitions.More

PWS Fire Update - Friday 15 February 2019


Parks and Wildlife Tasmania (PWS) can advise the following locations, reserves and tracks have been re-opened today (Friday 15 February).More

PWS Fire Update - Thursday 14 February 2019


Parks and Wildlife Tasmania (PWS) can advise the following locations, reserves and tracks have been re-opened.More

Macquarie Island free of pests


The Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Project has been declared a success.

The project to eradicate rabbits and rodents from Macquarie Island is a conservation achievement of worldwide significance.

The Minister for Environment, Parks and Heritage, Matthew Groom said a rigorous monitoring program, which followed baiting, had not detected a rabbit, rat or mouse in more than two years.

"The program is the world's largest island eradication for these three pest species and it has been an unqualified success," Mr Groom said.

"In 2007, the Australian and Tasmanian Governments announced they would jointly fund the $25 million project to eradicate rabbits, rats and mice from the World Heritage listed island.

"Australia can rightly be very proud of this outstanding result. It is exciting to see an ecosystem which suffered significant degradation due to pest species for more than 100 years, firmly on the road to recovery.

"Pest eradication is costly, as it requires the removal of every last individual of a species, but in the long run is far cheaper than ongoing pest control."

Mr Groom said the island's considerable size of 12,785 hectares, and its location 1500 kilometres southeast of Tasmania in the sub-Antarctic, presented incredible logistical challenges.

"Meticulous planning was required to meet these challenges and to minimise the impact on non-target species," Mr Groom said.

"The project's success has been an incredible feat of persistence and dedication by the hunters and dog handlers from the Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service."

"They have scoured the island intensively, walking  90,000 km, more than two times the earth's circumference, in their efforts to locate any surviving individual pests."

"While it may take a decade or more for the island's ecosystem to achieve equilibrium following the removal of the pest species, there are already significant signs of recovery in terms of vegetation and bird species.

"It was expected that up to 24 bird species will benefit from the eradication project, and signs of increased breeding success of some species are encouraging."

Mr Groom said biosecurity measures for all shipping to the island have been improved in a joint program between the Australian Antarctic Division and the Parks and Wildlife Service.

Macquarie Island free of pests

Rabbit-damaged vegetation in 2005.

Macquarie Island free of pests

Re-growth of vegetation at the same location in 2014.