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Campaign to save rare Australian animals, birds boosted by n

作者:ihpa.net 发布时间:2017-09-04

CANBERRA, Jan. 22 (Xinhua) -- The Australian government has ramped up its campaign to save a number of endangered native birds and mammals with the announcement of a 91 million U.S. dollar funding package on Friday.

Part of the plan to save the threatened species will focus on wiping out more than two million feral cats which are thought to be responsible for much of the devastation among native populations.

Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt announced on Friday that the 16 bird and mammal species that were being added to the threatened list during a visit to Werribee Zoo, outside Melbourne.

Hunt said improvements had already been made to help save some of Australia's rarest, most at-risk species, as projects tackling feral cats and improving animal habitats had already started across the country.

"As any international visitor will tell you, we are truly lucky to share this continent with so many wonderful and distinctly Australian plants and animals," Hunt said on Friday.

"It is our duty to care for them, so our bilbies, numbats, quolls and other unique fauna and flora remain a living part of our culture."

The mahogany glider, eastern quoll, western ringtail possum and Christmas Island flying-fox are among several animals that will be added to the list of 20 mammals prioritized under the federal government's threatened species strategy.

The cassowary, swift parrot, eastern curlew and red-tailed black cockatoo, among others, are set to be the newest additions on the list of priority birds.

More than 500 programs supporting emergency intervention and creating safe havens for various protected species have already begun, though the federal government has set ambitious new targets for feral cat control with the increased funding.

More than 20 million feral cats across Australia are thought to have been responsible for the extinction of 29 native species since 1788.

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