18 September, 2023
Better protection for native animals and declaring war on feral cats
FEDERAL Member for Blair Shayne Neumann has welcomed the announcement by the Federal Government of greater protections for threatened plants and animals, and a new action plan on feral cats.
New conservation advice has been created to better protect 20 threatened species and 15 ecological communities. This includes updated analysis of threats and recommended recovery actions for two birds, two frogs, one reptile, five mammals, 10 plants and 15 ecological communities.
Forty-eight species, including threatened plants, frogs, freshwater crayfish, insects and reptiles, have also been given greater protection under Australia’s national environmental law.
The Government is also releasing Recovery Plans for the maugean skate, swift parrot, native macadamia and the yirrkoo (water mouse). Recovery Plans provide a roadmap on how best to support a threatened species. It gives comprehensive advice on what must be done to protect and restore important populations and habitats, and reduce threats.
The Australian Government is committed to protecting threatened species and is strengthening national environmental laws and investing over $500 million to directly boost outcomes for threatened native plants and animals and tackle invasive species.
To mark Threatened Species Day last Thursday, Mr Neumann attended an ‘Animal Meet and Greet’ at Parliament House to meet some of precious native animals, and hear about what the Government is doing to protect them.
“It was wonderful to meet a red-tailed black cockatoo, which is found across Ipswich and Brisbane. There are only about 1,000 of these beautiful birds left in the wild, so we need to do everything we can to protect them,” Mr Neumann said.
“I’m pleased the Federal Government is already supporting koala conservation projects in Ipswich and the Somerset Region, but we need to do more across the board.”
The Federal Government has opened consultation on a new action plan to stop feral cats from decimating native wildlife and driving vulnerable native species to the brink of extinction.
Mr Neumann said the plan sets new goals to reduce feral cat numbers across Australia.
Goals include no new extinctions caused by feral cats and making sure feral cats do not endanger native species that are not currently threatened.
“Cats kill two billion reptiles, birds and mammals every year in Australia. That’s almost six million every night,” Mr Neumann said.
“Cats played a role in Australia’s two latest extinctions. And they are one of the main reasons Australia is the mammal extinction capital of the world.
“I want to see a feral cat free Australia. If we are serious about protecting our precious threatened species, then we have to tackle one of their biggest killers.
“We are declaring war on feral cats and setting up our battle plan to win that war.”
Public consultation on the new plan is open until December 2023. You can read it at https://consult.dcceew.gov.au/draft-updated-threat-abatement-plan-for-predation-by-feral-cats