- Charles Sturt’s Associate Professor Dale Nimmo member of expert panel charged with canvassing strategies for wildlife and habitat recovery after recent bushfires
A Charles Sturt University animal ecologist has been playing a leading role in identifying the animals most at risk of extinction from the recent bushfires and developing strategies to ensure their survival.
Associate Professor Dale Nimmo (pictured) is part of the federal government’s expert panel on wildlife and threatened species bushfire recovery.
The findings and recommendations of the expert panel, chaired by Threatened Species Commissioner Dr Sally Box, will play a crucial role in determining the federal government’s allocation of its initial $50 million in funding to counteract the ecological disaster.
Albury-Wodonga-based Professor Nimmo from the School of Environmental Sciences, who is also a member of the Institute for Land, Water and Society, said the panel is in the process of identifying species that are particularly imperilled by the recent fires and require urgent interventions to reduce the chance of extinction.
“The role of the panel is to help guide Australia’s ecological response to the bushfires by helping to identify and prioritise actions that can prevent extinctions, reduce the suffering of native animals impacted by fires, and maximise the likelihood of long-term recovery of native species and ecosystems,” he said.
“In doing so, we want to ensure that we learn from any intervention that is made.
“Actions will include protecting un-burned refuges for native species, the control of invasive predators and herbivores, emergency salvage of plants and animals for ex-situ conservation, and providing supplementary resources like food, water and shelter for wildlife where needed.”
Professor Nimmo has written about the impact of the bushfires on Australia’s native animals, including articles about their survival techniques and strategies in the face of fires, and dispelling the myth that wombats deliberately act to save other species from fires.