Friday, November 13, 2009

Bob Irwin speaks up for Endangered Cassowaries at Mission Beach

Earlier in the week, On 7 November 2009, Cairns Post environment journalist Julie Lightfoot wrote an article about Bob Irwin’s visit to Mission Beach: "Steve Irwin’s dad joins cassowary fight".

Just in case you are one of the 5 people on this planet who don’t know, Bob Irwin is the father of the late Steve Irwin “The Crocodile Hunter”.
Photo by Julie Lightfoot from Cairns Post.

Bob is committed to wildlife and conservation and has put his weight behind many campaigns to protect threatened wildlife and habitats. I applaud him for doing his bit to help our endangered southern cassowary at Mission Beach.

Today I read another article in the Cairns Post about Bob Irwin that I would like to share with you.

Bob Irwin fights for cassowary
Story by Cairns Post journalist Julie Lightfoot
BOB Irwin is the face of Australia's koala and hairy-nose wombat conservation campaigns, and now he is fighting to save the endangered cassowary.

The father of Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin won hearts when he made a special trip to the Far North this week to nationally launch a land buyback scheme for Mission Beach, south of Cairns.

Mr Irwin is urging Australians to donate money to Rainforest Rescue for voluntary rainforest block buybacks, and he has called on the State and Federal governments to match whatever money is raised.

"The best estimate is we have 1000 cassowaries left in North Queensland … and in Mission Beach the population may now be as low as 40," he told a crowd of supporters yesterday.

"These birds are in danger of extinction and we need to act right now to preserve their habitat.

"We want every single (rainforest) block that can be purchased by the public and government."

Rainforest Rescue's Kelvin Davies said his not-for-profit organisation had previously sunk $600,000 worth of donations into land purchases for nature refuges in the Daintree.

"We can keep writing letters to politicians but we can also take a lead for the government to follow," he told the crowd of his joint campaign with Mr Irwin and Mission Beach conservation group C4.

The local organisation has estimated about 40 per cent of its town's essential cassowary habitat remains unprotected. Mr Davies said valuable land was already on the market.

"We won't be coercing anyone to sell," he said. "But we are on the lookout for rainforest properties and while one or two properties won’t solve the problem we do hope it will demonstrate to all levels of government that people want this."

Donations were already trickling in after a launch on the group's website late on Wednesday, he said.

You can view this story on the Cairns Post website. I recommend you do so as you will also find a link in the story that has some great cassowary photos that are well worth checking out.

You will also find a story about a rare rainforest snail that has been named Crikey steveirwini in honour of Steve Irwin.

And no I am not pulling your leg!

If you feel like making a donation and supporting this good work you can visit the Rainforest Rescue website at

Before I go I would like to praise Bob Irwin, Kelvin Davies, C4, and Liz Gallie for their great work. I would also like to acknowledge the Cairns Post and journalist Julie Lightfoot for reporting this story and helping to get the message out there.

Cheers Russ

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