Articles on Australian endangered species

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The Murray cod is popular amongst fishers, and also critically endangered - at least according to the IUCN. Flickr/guochai

Australian endangered species: Murray Cod

The Murray cod (Maccullochella peelii) is the largest native Australian freshwater fish species, and is probably the most iconic. The species’ credentials are impressive: it can live for more than 50 years…
The Retro Slider - the best-named reptile in Australia? Eric Vanderduys

Australian endangered species: Retro Slider

When asked to name an Australian lizard, most Australians would probably pick the familiar blue-tongue, stumpy lizard or bearded dragon, or perhaps the iconic thorny devil, frill-neck lizard or a goanna…
The Cataract Gorge in Launceston, Tasmania, once home to the Tasmanian Torrent Midge. Flickr/Simon Lieschke

Australian endangered species: Tasmanian Torrent Midge

Torrent midges, as their name suggests, make their homes in the fastest-flowing parts of rivers and streams. Their larvae have evolved remarkable and unique adaptations, including suckers on their underside…
Since 1998 sea snakes have vanished from reefs in Western Australia. This Leaf-scaled sea snake may already be extinct. Hal Cogger

Australian endangered species: Sea snakes

Short-nosed (Aipysurus apraefrontalis) and Leaf-scaled (A. foliosquama) sea snakes are restricted to coral reefs in Western Australia. Both species are known from Ashmore and Hibernia Reefs, while the…
Gilbert’s Potoroo: rediscovered in 1994 after nearly 100 years. Dick Walker

Australian endangered species: Gilbert’s Potoroo

Gilbert’s Potoroo (Potorous gilbertii) is one of four species of potoroo. It has dense grey-brown fur, paler on the underside, with furry jowls, large eyes and an almost hairless tail. It is the smallest…
The Denison Rain Crayfish is more closely related to crayfish in Madagascar than to other Australian species. Alastair Richardson.

Australian endangered species: Rain Crayfish

The buttongrass plains, swamps and heathy slopes of western Tasmania support a suite of burrowing crayfish species in the endemic genera Ombrastacoides and Spinastacoides. These nutrient-poor, acid peatlands…
The Western Swamp Tortoise was rediscovered in the 1950s. Nicola Mitchell

Australian endangered species: Western Swamp Tortoise

The Western Swamp Tortoise (Pseudemydura umbrina) is Australia’s rarest reptile. Originally it was known only from a single specimen collected in 1839 from an unknown location in Western Australia. No…
A breeding colony of Lord Howe Island Stick Insects was founded at Melbourne Zoo. AAP

Australian endangered species: Lord Howe Island stick insect

The Lord Howe Island stick insect (Dryococelus australis) or “land lobster” is a large, flightless stick insect that was, until recently, thought to be extinct. It has a glossy brownish-black exoskeleton…
Only 3-8% of the original number of Southern Bluefin Tuna still exist. AAP

Australian endangered species: Southern Bluefin Tuna

Note: Southern Bluefin Tuna is listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN, but only as conservation dependent under Australian legislation. Southern Bluefin Tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) are majestic, temperate…
The Beautiful Nursery Frog is found only on Thornton Peak in northeast Queensland. Steve Williams

Australian endangered species: Beautiful Nursery Frog

The Beautiful Nursery Frog (Cophixalus concinnus) is a tiny ground-living frog from the family Microhylidae - from the Greek words “micros”, meaning small, and “hyla”, meaning forest or woods. The species…
An early dry season fire in Kakadu National Park – are these fires burning up our mammals? Clay Trauernicht

Scientists and national park managers are failing northern Australia’s vanishing mammals

Conservationists should take heart that Australia is finally waking up to the biodiversity crisis in Australia’s north. It is an urgent problem: right now, a diverse assortment of our small mammals – bandicoots…
Euastacus dharawalus is the most critical of the spiny crayfish group. Jason Coughran

Australian endangered species: Spiny Crayfish

You may be familiar with some of Australia’s more iconic spiny crayfish, such as the giant Murray River crayfish, Euastacus armatus, but there is an untold diversity within this endemic Australian genus…
The male Regent Honeyeater is larger and brighter than the female. Dean Ingwersen

Australian endangered species: Regent Honeyeater

The Regent Honeyeater (Anthochaera phrygia) is a spectacular, black, white and gold, medium-sized honeyeater. It has a bare, corrugated pale face, giving rise to its earlier name of Warty-faced Honeyeater…
We need to change the moral system that lets us off the hook for species extinction. Kelly Garbato

Threatened species: we’re failing on morality and policy

Extinction is a diminution of the natural legacy that we have inherited. It is a breach of the duty we have for inter-generational equity – that we should pass to our descendants a world as rich, intact…
Corroboree Frog. Australian Alps/Flickr

Australia’s critically endangered animal species

Australia has 96 critically endangered animal species, as listed by the IUCN. Over the coming months, we will be publishing…
Lists of endangered species don’t match up - why is that? dano/Flickr

Endangered species: what makes the list?

In 1999, Robert Hill’s Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Act (EPBC Act) was enacted. One of its hard-fought provisions was that threatened species (and ecological communities) had to be considered…
National parks’ role as a refuge from direct human intervention will only become more important in future. dracopylla/Flickr

Biodiversity crisis demands bolder thinking than bagging national parks

Tim Flannery’s recent Quarterly Essay, After the Future, questions whether Australian national parks will become “marsupial ghost towns” despite the tens of millions of dollars governments spend on them…
Without help, parks like Kakadu could become marsupial ghost towns. Territory Expeditions

The future for biodiversity conservation isn’t more national parks

Today we begin a series on Australia’s endangered species and how best to conserve them. The series will run each Thursday, and begins with this excerpt from Tim Flannery’s Quarterly Essay, After the Future…
It’s not surprising Australians want to protect endangered species like the numbat. It is surprising that governments won’t listen. dilettantiquity/flickr

Saving Australian endangered species - a policy gap and political opportunity

Tim Flannery, in his Quarterly Essay After the Future, is right to deplore the sudden abrogation of responsibility for threatened species by state and federal governments. The tragedy is that neglecting…

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