26 September 2023

Platypus plan hatched for River Torrens

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The Department for Environment and Water (DEW) said the launch of a new project to re-establish platypuses in the River Torrens was part of Adelaide’s push to become a National Park City.

The DEW said Green Adelaide would lead the development of a scoping study to return platypuses to the River Torrens, with input from key organisations, platypus researchers and councils.

The Department said the National Park City plan was a focused community effort to improve Adelaide’s liveability through a better connection between people and nature.

Minister for Environment and Water, David Speirs said the platypus reintroduction would provide environmental and tourism opportunities to support the long-term health of the 85-kilometre River Torrens system.

“The River Torrens has come a long way and with today’s improved native vegetation and water quality, it is the right time to progress this exciting project,” Mr Speirs said.

“Adelaide has just been ranked the most liveable city in Australia and third most liveable city in the world and projects like this will help further enhance this reputation,” he said.

Mr Speirs said platypuses, listed as a threatened species in Australia, had been considered extinct on mainland South Australia since the mid-1970s, but were now found on Kangaroo Island, with sightings in the Riverland during the 1990s and in 2018.

Presiding Member of the Green Adelaide Board, Chris Daniels said platypuses could be reintroduced to the river system with the right habitat and management techniques.

Professor Daniels said Green Adelaide was engaging with potential partners on the scoping study, which was expected to take about six months to develop.

More information on the National Park City plan can be accessed at this PS News link.

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