BRISBANE’S Alma Park Zoo invites the public to help “Feed a Devil” on September 9th as they host a fundraiser for Devil Ark – a conservation-breeding program for the endangered carnivorous marsupial. On Sunday, September 9th, the Zoo will join others across the country to raise money for Devil Ark, located high in the hills of Barrington Tops, New South Wales. The iconic Tasmanian devil is at serious risk of extinction from the highly contagious devil facial tumour disease (DFTD) and wild populations are disappearing fast.
High in the hills of Barrington Tops in NSW is Devil Ark – a conservation breeding program for the Tasmanian Devil.
In a bid to prevent extinction, devils must be captive bred in facilities well away from the disease – these include mainland Australian zoos, and the unique Devil Ark, which consists of large free ranging natural enclosures. It costs $2 to feed a Tasmanian Devil at the Ark and there are currently 120 hungry mouths to feed.
Alma Park Zoo curator Dr Heather Hesterman said Feed a Devil events were a fun way to help save the endangered species and learn more about the iconic Aussie animal. Schools and other businesses can also register to help at www.devilark.com.au/support/feedadevilday.
“Our Feed a Devil weekend ties in with National Threatened Species Day on Friday, September 7, which Alma Park Zoo is supporting at a large event in Queen Street Mall, Brisbane,” Dr Hesterman said.
“September 7 commemorates the death of the last Thylacine (Tasmanian tiger) in captivity in 1936, and is an important reminder to do everything we can to save their closest relative, the Tasmanian devil.”
Dr Hesterman completed her PhD on Tasmanian devils and was captive manager for the Tasmanian Government devil program prior to instatement as Alma Park Zoo Curator. The Feed a Devil event is a call to arms for zoo staff and the public from Dr Hesterman who is especially passionate about conservation of this species – including Alma Park Zoo’s own precious devils.
Alma Park Zoo Manager Julie Seabrook encouraged visitors to partake in the day. “Visitors are encouraged to dress in black, white and red (with a prize for best dressed), share our fundraiser BBQ and enjoy activities including face painting while they learn more about devils and widespread efforts to save them,” she said. Alma Park Zoo’s Feed a Devil event will run from 9am on Sunday September 8.
Visitors are welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy in the Zoo’s relaxing gardens, purchase food from Palm Cafe or enjoy the fundraising BBQ.