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'Bold' conservation move to halt the decline of albatross

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robert99 robert99 Sweden Posts: 1360
1 9 Oct 2017
http://www.smh.com.au/environment/conservation/bold-conservation-move-to-halt-the-decline-of-australias-shy-albatross-20171008-gywfq2.html

Declining breeding rates of the shy albatross, Australia's only endemic species of the spectacular bird, have prompted conservationists to make an unusual intervention.

Found only on three islands off Tasmania, the bird – whose wingspan can stretch to 2.6 metres – has survived previous assaults by humans particularly during the 1800s when sealers and then feather collectors arrived.

Now, with signs climate change and other man-made threats are undermining survival rates, WWF-Australia has teamed with the federal and Tasmanian governments, CSIRO and the Tasmanian Albatross fund to start building artificial nests to give the shy albatross a helping hand.

"It's bold," Darren Grover, head of living ecosystems for WWF-Australia, said. "We've got too much to lose to do nothing."

Earlier this year, scientists and volunteers installed 120 of the artificial nests on parts of rocky Albatross Island, an 18-hectare reserve located between King Island in Bass Strait and the north-west tip of Tasmania.

"Their nests range from a barest scrape on the rocks to a high-sculptured pottery-like pedestal," said Rachael Alderman, a wildlife biologist with the state's Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment.
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