Image: Aussie Ark
Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team
Date: January 26, 2023 9:30 am
Three Tasmanian devils have taken flights from around Australia to arrive at Aussie Ark in New South Wales where they will become part of a unique conservation effort aimed at saving the species.
One of the most important new arrivals to the population is male Winston. He has come to Aussie Ark from Tasmania as part of a collaboration with the Tasmanian government. He was joined by Cria from Monarto Safari Park in South Australia, and Lucas from Healesville Sanctuary in Victoria.
Winston travelled on Qantas taking 13 hours to make his way from Hobart to Sydney while Cria and Lucas flew with Virgin Airlines. At the airport they were met by Brett Headley of Ceva Logistics and his air-conditioned van which drove them in comfort from the airport to near the Barrington Tops where Aussie Ark is located.
At the base of the mountain they were met by Aussie Ark Curator Kelly Davis who took them for the last 45 minutes of their journey to their new home at Aussie Ark.
“It was so exciting to receive these Devils,” Ms Kelly said. “They didn’t fly First Class but they were treated like true VIPs every step of the way!”
Upon their arrival at Aussie Ark the three devils underwent a health check which ensured they were in good health after their long journey. “After their health check the three Devils were housed in separate intensive enclosures for a two week quarantine period,” Ms Kelly explained. “We checked them constantly, monitoring them for any possibility of ill health or disease.”
With all of the devils showing no signs of illness they could finally make their way in to large environmental enclosures at the sanctuary where they will live alongside four female and three other male devils. Each of the females housed in the pens are considered a genetic match with these males and will hopefully mate with them in the future.
“The receipt of these three Devils is huge for Aussie Ark and also the conservation of this species,” Ms Kelly said. “It brings new genetics, new bloodlines, into our population so we can create a really robust insurance population. Thank you to Winston, Cria and Lucas for making the long journey!”
Aussie Ark is home to the largest population of Tasmanian Devils on mainland Australia. The arrival of the three new males has been timed to give the best chance that they will add their genetics to the population during the 2023 breeding season which will begin in the Autumn.
“It’s really exciting to know that some of the Tasmanian Devil joey born in this year’s breeding season will come from these three males,” Ms Kelly said.
“Especially the ones that call Winston Dad, who will have fresh Tasmanian blood in their veins.”
A transmissable cancer, one of only two ever discovered is the biggest threat to the Tasmanian devil Find out why and the efforts to save them in our fact file.
Image: Aussie Ark
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