Bushfire affected species listed as threatened

The Minister for the Environment and Water is today listing the South-eastern Glossy Black-Cockatoo and the Mountain Skink as threatened under national environment law.  

Listing a species under environmental law can provide it with the support of a recovery plan or conservation advice, funding and support to bounce back. The Government has committed to providing $224.5 million over the forward estimates to help arrest species decline and restore populations of endangered plants and animals.

Minister Tanya Plibersek has accepted the Threatened Species Scientific Committee’s recommendation to list the South-eastern Glossy Black-Cockatoo as vulnerable on the threatened species list under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).

The Minister has listed the Mountain Skink as endangered. It is found in isolated patches of rocky habitat in the mountains and subalpine areas of Victoria, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory.

Both species were severely impacted by the 2019-2020 Black Summer bushfires and prioritised for listing assessment in the wake of the fires.  

A comprehensive statutory Conservation Advice is now in place for both species to guide their protection and conservation.

A national Recovery Plan for the South-eastern Glossy Black-Cockatoo will also be developed to further facilitate conservation action across its national range and to coordinate management across multiple jurisdictions and diverse stakeholder groups, including First Nations people and communities.

The Australian Government is investing more than $1 million in projects benefitting the South-eastern Glossy Black-Cockatoo through on ground actions including citizen science surveys and coordinating cross-jurisdictional monitoring, nest box installation, and revegetation and protection of the Black She‑oak, which is their main source of food and habitat.

An investment of $800,000 is supporting the recovery and conservation of alpine reptiles, including the Mountain Skink, through protection of their known and suspected habitat and surveys to uncover more about this illusive skink.

Quotes attributable to Minister for the Environment and Water Tanya Plibersek:

“Today, I have listed the Mountain Skink as endangered under national environmental law.

“At the same time, I have listed the beloved South-eastern Glossy Black-Cockatoo as vulnerable.

“The damage caused by the Black Summer bushfires is still being felt today and can be seen reflected in these listings today.

“The fires had an immense impact on our environment, from a small reptile found in the mountains to a bird that is at home on the coast – there is still a lot of work to do.

“The Australian Government has committed to establishing the Saving Native Species Program that will boost protection for many threatened species like these, combat invasive species, and strengthen conservation planning required under national environmental law.

“We are working closely with experts and community groups to help prevent species decline and restore populations of endangered plants and animals.

“These listings will ensure the prioritisation of recovery actions to protect both species and offer conservation guidance on a national scale.”