‘Bilby Brother’ studied animal for years
YOU’D be hard pressed to find someone more passionate about bilbies than Peter McRae.
Mr McRae is one of two ‘Bilby Brothers’, with the other being Frank Manthey.
They both worked for the Queensland Government in a conservation role, developing and building up a small population of the endangered animal in Charleville.
“I started breeding bilbies in Charleville 30 years ago, back when people didn’t know what a bilby was,” Mr McRae said.
“We started getting interest from the kids and the people from town and now it’s grown in to something really big.”
Mr McRae attended the second annual Fur Ball in Charleville on Saturday.
He said events like the ball were important in ensuring the survival of the species.
“There’s something like 98% of the population of bilbies that have disappeared,” he said.
“It’s important to not only raise funds but also awareness of the bilby.”
Mr McRae has dedicated a large portion of his life to studying the animal and said he wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I loved being out in the desert studying the bilbies,” he said.
“It’s been a pretty special life.”
BILBY HERO: Tracy Wattz and Bilby Brother Peter McRae.