Australia brings back Eastern Barred Bandicoot from brink of extinction

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Published on 15 Sep 2021, 16:12
A small nocturnal marsupial that once roamed the Australian mainland has been brought back from the brink of extinction after a decades-long conservation effort.

The Eastern Barred Bandicoot populated the grassy plains of Victoria state's southwest until it was all but obliterated by non-native foxes, feral cats and habitat destruction.

By 1989, there were just 150 animals left in the region, mostly scrounging an existence in rusted-out cars at a rubbish dump.

Over the past three decades, multi-million dollar captive breeding and rewilding programmes have revived the mainland Australian population to an estimated 1,500 - bumping it off the state's "extinct in the wild" list.

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