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Threatened Species Priority List Welcome But Wanting

The Federal Government has today announced the prioritisation of 100 threatened species that will receive focused efforts and funding support to aid their recovery. While additional assistance for the priority species is welcome, conservation group Humane Society International has expressed concern for the remaining 1700 threatened species listed under federal environment legislation.

The announcement of the 100 priority species, which includes quokkas, koalas, and the Australian sea lion, also comes amid a review of conservation planning decisions which may see requirements for recovery plans revoked for up to 600 threatened species. One species, the spectacled flying fox, is listed as a priority species but also appears on the list of species for which a recovery plan may no longer be required.

Nicola Beynon, Head of Campaigns for Humane Society International, said, "While we are glad to see some species receiving extra conservation support, we can't help but fear for those that are not prioritised but are just as deserving of protection. What all 1800 of our threatened species and their habitats need now are concerted conservation efforts and suitable resourcing—that should be our true priority.

Humane Society International is responsible for the listing of more than 100 threatened species and Threatened Ecological Communities under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act.

It is very concerning that no Threatened Ecological Communities have been prioritised in the Threatened Species Strategy particularly when so many of them are also losing the requirement for recovery plans. Threatened ecological communities provide habitat for a multitude of threatened species and so it should make sense to prioritise their recovery.

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