More endangered dibblers re-located to island home

One of Australia’s rarest marsupials has had a population boost, with 28 dibblers released at Dirk Hartog Island National Park.

The precious little carnivores, bred at Perth Zoo, travelled 800 kilometres by road, plane and helicopter to reach the new home. Staff from the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions released 16 males and 12 females in optimal conditions for their welfare.

This is the fourth dibbler release on Dirk Hartog Island since 2019. Another 16 will be added soon, taking the total number to 137.

The species once thrived on the island until feral animals wiped them out. It was feared dibblers were extinct for half a century, before being rediscovered near Albany in 1967.

The Return to 1616 project has also seen the reintroduction of rufous hare-wallabies, banded hare-wallabies, Shark Bay bandicoots, Shark Bay mice, greater stick-nest rats and western grass wrens.

Under the program, Dirk Hartog Island has become the world’s largest island to have feral cats, sheep and goats eradicated. More information on the Return to 1616 project here.

Dibblers are very agile animals and often climb bushes to lick nectar from flowers. Photo credit: Perth Zoo