The unique marsupials Tasmanian demons that disappeared 3,000 years ago off the mainland of Australia were recently released into the jungles of the vast island continent, a “historic” step in an ambitious conservation plan. ‘Species.
The dangerous Tasmanian devil returns to the forest Australia Continent. On Monday, October 5, the Aussie Ark Association announced the release of 26 carnivorous mammals at a 400-hectare sanctuary in Barrington Tops, three and a half hours north of Sydney.
The “historic” operation, which took place in July and September, was the first step in an outreach program aimed at creating a protected population, Aussie Arc leader Tim Faulkner explained. The island of Tasmania is a serious form of infectious cancer.
After sixteen years of work on setting up the largest devil breeding project on Australia’s mainland, Tim Faulkner considers it “incredible”. “It was like a dream,” he said. “The largest native hunting point-tail marsupial cat on the continent, it weighs more than a kilo.
The devil, which weighs up to eight kilograms, usually preys on other native animals or feeds on the carcasses of dead animals. “Sarcophilus harisi” is not dangerous to humans or livestock, but defends itself when attacked, causing serious injury.
Infectious cancer attacks Tasmanian demons
This nocturnal marsupial with black or brown hairs gives off a strong odor when it is stressed, having been affected by a disease since 1996, Tasmanian devil (TFDT) contagious facial tumor, Almost 100% dangerous, which reduced 85% of its population.
This contagious cancer, cancer is not common, except for some animal species that are spread by demons attacking each other, have very aggressive and powerful jaws when they mate or fight. In particular, animals die of starvation when tumors reach the mouth, preventing them from eating.
Compared to the 150,000 who got the disease, 2,000 demons still live in the wild. On the other hand, on the mainland of Australia, they may have disappeared 3000 years ago, a priory destroyed by dingoes. The purpose of this project is to create a “reserve population” that is currently facing an incurable disease while participating in the recovery of the native environment. “Demons are one of the only natural remedies to control the number of foxes and cats, which make up the majority of the 40 extinctions of mammal species in Australia,” says Tim Faulkner. “The role here is beyond the Tasmanian devil.”
The project is reminiscent of a sign that the wolf was reintroduced into Yellowstone’s American park in the 1990s, which, according to experts, had a layer of positive effects: regenerating shrubs in rivers, stabilizing water courses. Return of water, birds and beavers …
The Aussie Arc aims to release more demons to unsafe areas where they face a number of threats, including wildfires destroying Australia each year. Along with the marsupial cat, permelite (or bandicoot) and petroglyph (or rock walby), the devil is one of seven species that Aussie Ark plans to reintroduce to the continent in the coming years.