Aerial view of Darlington, Maria Island National Park
Aerial view of Darlington, Maria Island National Park (photograph: Joe Shemesh)

Maria Island macropod management program

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Maria Island wildlife management operation

The Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS) will undertake a wildlife management operation at Maria Island National Park between Sunday 27 June until Friday 2 July 2021.

PWS Parks and Reserves Manager Brian Campbell explained that: “The Parks and Wildlife Service has a responsibility to manage Maria Island in a way that conserves the island's biodiversity while also maintaining a viable and healthy animal population."

PWS has been actively managing the island's macropod species since 1994 and this year there is a need to remove up to 600 animals - 150 Bennetts wallabies, 350 Tasmanian pademelons, and 100 Forester kangaroos.

The decision to remove these animals is based on a scientific monitoring program of three key indicators that provide a picture of the health of the animals, animal populations and fertility rates, animal health and food supply through assessment of current and future pasture conditions.

Maria Island is unique in that the environment has been significantly altered by human use and the past introduction of species, including Forester kangaroos and Bennetts wallabies presents ongoing management challenges.

Population control on Maria Island is an animal welfare issue. When the macropod populations are too high, animals become sick and distressed, and this is what we are aiming to avoid."​

Maria Island will be temporarily closed to the public from 5pm Sunday 27 June until 8am Friday 2 July while the operation occurs.​

​For further information see Maria Island Macropod Managment -Frequently Asked Questions.

Published 29/06/2021