Known as the ‘Bush Blitz’, Australia will spend 10 million Australian dollars (8.88 million US dollars) over the next three years to conduct biodiversity surveys in far-flung places, reports Sydney Morning Herald. The program hopes to both uncover new species and gather more data about innumerable little-known plants and animals on the continent.
The Bush Blitz will undertake a total of eighteen major expeditions during three years. Groups will be made up of 10-12 scientists and volunteers who will survey the nation’s reserves for hidden biological treasures. The program is focusing on places that are little-known both to the public and researchers.
The International conservation group Earthwatch. is set-up to manage research sites and coordinate volunteers.
“[Bush Blitz is] bringing together business, and community groups, and government, and volunteers, in a way that probably hasn’t been done before. This is an important large-scale project that just couldn’t be done by one group, or by scientists alone,” Earthwatch Director, Richard Glimore, told the Sydney Morning Herald.
The Bush Blitz is funded by the Australian government (6 million dollars) and mining company BHP Billiton (4 million dollars).
(09/17/2009) Surveys on islands off the coast in the Kimberley region of Western Australia have discovered at least 45 new species of snail.
(07/02/2009) This is by no means a new battle: in fact, Tasmanian industrial foresters and environmentalists have been fighting over the issue of clearcutting the island’s forests for decades. The battle—some would probably prefer ‘war’—is over nothing less than the future of Tasmania. Some Tasmanians see the rich forests that surround them in terms of income, dollars and cents; they see money literally growing on trees, or more appropriately growing on monoculture plantations and government owned native forests. They see the wilderness of Tasmania as an exploitative resource.
(10/31/2008) Two species of gecko have been discovered in the southern deserts of Western Australia and South Australia, report researchers from the Western Australian Museum.