GeoCatch was successful in securing $40,000 of funding from the State Government to continue its long running Peppies for Possums program in 2018 to protect local western ringtail possum populations.
Possum night walks, the annual Possum Tally, habitat planting days, and a community co-designed campaign to foster responsible pet ownership are some of the activities GeoCatch encourages the local community to participate in this year.
The funding received from the State Government’s Natural Resource Management Program will enable GeoCatch to roll out a multi-pronged approach to protecting Busselton and Dunsborough’s western ringtail possum populations, with two key projects dedicated to enhancing ringtail possum habitat, and raising community awareness about this critically endangered species.
As part of the awareness raising project, GeoCatch will continue its popular possum nightwalks, the annual possum tally, and habitat planting days with the community and local schools.
“One of the activities we’re really excited about this year is our new initiative that addresses the issue of responsible pet ownership” said GeoCatch projects manager, Hayley Bain.
“We will be looking at ways to reduce predation of domestic pets on western ringtail possums by fostering responsible pet ownership actions in the community. It’s a relevant issue in our community as we all love our pets, and we also all live with the critically endangered ringtail possum and other wildlife that seek habitat in our yards”.
GeoCatch will be holding a community workshop on Thursday to obtain input from stakeholders to help develop the most effective and innovative campaign possible. It’s the first time GeoCatch has initiated a project of this kind and there has been a very high level of interest in the community so far.
GeoCatch’s second funded project will see continuation of its important western ringtail possum habitat enhancement project at Wonnerup, with revegetation and weed control in a local conservation reserve. This project is run in partnership with Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions.
“We encourage the local community to get involved in GeoCatch’s activities this year and play their part in helping to protect this locally iconic species” said Hayley.
For more information contact Hayley Bain at GeoCatch on 97810 111 or visit: https://geocatch.asn.au/our-work/biodiversity/western-ringtail-possum/.