Chil­dren sep­a­rat­ing na­tives from fer­als

Avon Valley Gazette - - OPINION -

RES­I­DENTS are en­cour­aged to keep an eye out for Quentin the Quenda dis­plays rais­ing aware­ness about na­tive species through­out li­braries in the Shire of Kala­munda.

A colour­ing and word find com­pe­ti­tion was or­gan­ised re­cently to help ed­u­cate lo­cal chil­dren about an­i­mals found in their back yard.

En­try to the com­pe­ti­tion was open to chil­dren aged from four to 12, with Imo­gen Auth (4) win­ning the four to six years sec­tion and Myla Odenko (9) tak­ing home the seven to nine years prize.

Both girls re­ceived a copy of the il­lus­trated book Leaf Lit­ter: Ex­plor­ing the Mys­ter­ies of a Hid­den World by award-win­ning au­thor and illustrator Rachel Tonkin.

An­shika Mehla (10) won the word find com­pe­ti­tion for older chil­dren and re­ceived a copy of Newts, Lutes and Bandi­coots by Mark Carthew and Mike Spoor, a hu­mor­ous book of rhymes, rid­dles and ob­jects to look for be­tween the pages.

All the win­ners col­lected a prize pack filled with Con­necta pens, pen­cils and lit­er­a­ture about the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment.

Shire Pres­i­dent Sue Bilich said the com­pe­ti­tion at­tracted more than 75 en­tries.

“It was won­der­ful to see so many colour­ful en­tries,” Ms Bilich said.

“Many an­i­mals make the Shire of Kala­munda their home, which can at times lead to con­fu­sion about which an­i­mal is which,” she said.

“This par­tic­u­larly ap­plies to dis­tin­guish­ing be­tween na­tive bandi­coots – known lo­cally as quendas or south­ern brown bandi­coots – and in­tro­duced feral ro­dents.

“Young bandi­coots can eas­ily be mis­taken for adult rats and res­i­dents are urged to fa­mil­iarise them­selves with the dif­fer­ence.”

Quendas are na­tive mar­su­pi­als with small, rounded ears, a long pointy nose, long front claws and a short fat tail.

D433105

Sheena Bell, Mick Davis, Sue Bilich and Myla Odenko.

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