Wild river rangers and Australia Zoo to form a new partnership

 

copyright by Australia Zoo

 

The Bligh Government has marked today’s Steve Irwin Day commemorations with a

poignant and significant partnership with Australia Zoo to provide mentoring and

training experience for rangers working in Queensland’s unique Wild Rivers region.

Premier Anna Bligh today joined Australia Zoo director Terri Irwin to announce the

Memorandum of Understanding which will offer Wild River Rangers an opportunity to

broaden their experience in wildlife handling and management issues under a new

partnership with Australia Zoo.

“It may also provide exposure for the rangers to international networks and the

ecotourism industry, as many rangers are traditional owners who are keen to start

their own tourism ventures on their land and sea country,” Ms Bligh said.

 “The Wild River Rangers program has been an overwhelming success with 27

rangers employed so far – and more to be employed this year -  to work with

landholders, communities and traditional owners to protect and promote the state’s

declared wild river systems in Northern Queensland.

“The government has invested in excess of $8M to date in the wild river ranger

program and is interested in finding ways to further developing its relationship with

Australia Zoo, which has expressed a long-term commitment to mentor, train and

provide employment opportunities for Indigenous people.

 “This will provide them with an opportunity to share their invaluable traditional

knowledge about conservation and cultural heritage.

 “In the future it’s possible for the partnership to be formalised with a ‘ranger

exchange’ or rotational placements which will provide Wild River Rangers and zoo

rangers with opportunities to further network and develop new skills in a different

environment.”

Director of Australia Zoo Terri Irwin said the signing of the MOU was an important

step toward securing the future of Indigenous people and the future of the wildlife and

habitat along the Wenlock River in Cape York.

“Signing this MOU signifies our dedication to providing ongoing opportunities with

Indigenous people and the proactive management of the Wenlock River,” Mrs Irwin

said.

Mrs Irwin also said that signing the MOU on Steve Irwin Day – November 15 – was a

poignant announcement to honour Steve’s legacy.

“Signing the MOU on Steve Irwin Day is particularly significant as we further the work

Steve was so passionate about. Steve felt it was important to work with Indigenous

people to protect wildlife and wild places.”

Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Minister Stephen Robertson said the

partnership would complement and build existing relationship 

between Australia Zoo with a number of Wild River Rangers.

 

Quelle : Australia Zoo Press Media