Mayor calls for strategy to assist groups working to help wildlife impacted by fires

21 Feb 2020

Blue Mountains Mayor Mark Greenhill will take a Mayoral Minute to Council on 25 February 2020 seeking a strategy that will assist groups working to help wildlife impacted by the recent bush fires.

Mayor Greenhill said: “The impact on animals in and around our World Heritage National Park is unprecedented.

“Like me, our community has been deeply impacted by what we have seen and by the untold suffering.

“As Federal and State recovery funds slowly trickle in, I can see just how hard volunteers and wildlife agencies alike are working to try and support animals who have suffered terribly as a result of this summer’s fires.

“It needs to be noted that the bush fires have come at the same time as the country suffers a significant drought.

“The impact on biodiversity, both plants and animals, has been overwhelming and awful. The NSW fires alone have been estimated to have caused the loss of 1.25 billion animals.

“After the bushfires, our wonderful Blue Mountains community mobilised rapidly to rescue injured wildlife, provide food and water for impacted animals and advocated for action. 

“Given the high degree of compassion, interest and engagement in these activities, and the number of groups active in this space, there is a need for strategic coordination in this area.

“My Mayoral Minute seeks to give my fellow Councillors an understanding of medium to long term wildlife protection strategies across Local Government and State agencies, peak non-government organisations, and members of the community. 

“There are some wonderful initiatives already being actively delivered, and I want Councillors to understand these so that we can look at what role we may play.

The briefing I am calling for will look at:

  • Provision of safe, supplementary food sources for animals;
  • Support for the ongoing scientific research and monitoring of wildlife recovery;
  • Actions to improve community education and awareness into wildlife feeding and appropriate pet management;
  • Coordination, implementation and evaluation of multi-tenure land holder pest control programs, that serve to protect wildlife and improve recovery and
  • Support for the inclusion of biodiversity recovery initiatives in Regional Recovery programs.

“The briefing will also cover the relationship between local wildlife support and biodiversity conservation activities occurring within the regional recovery framework.

“The impact these fires have had on our animals is profound and I believe we have a role to play in their recovery.”

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