Tortoises on the move
A GROUP of critically endangered western swamp tortoises have been moved into the South-West from Perth Zoo to help ensure the survival of the species.
The Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPAW) released the 24 captive-bred tortoises from the zoo into conservation reserves in Meerup, south of Northcliffe, and east of Augusta, as part of the colonisation trial.
Environment Minister Albert Jacob said it was the first time a vertebrate animal species had been moved outside of its historic range in search of suitable alternate habitats.
“Researchers have identified suitable sites for the assisted colonisation trial and have considered current and future climate scenarios and the impact on tortoises and egg development,” he said.
“The western swamp tortoises will be monitored in collaboration with students and staff from the University of Western Australia during the next 12 months.”