EIGHT eastern bettongs have been released into the Mulligans Flat Woodland Sanctuary expansion area, the next step in gradually reintroducing them to mainland Australia.
For more than 100 years, eastern bettongs, also known as Ngaluda in the Ngunnawal language, have been extinct outside of Tasmania, the ACT government said.
The Eastern Bettong had a pivotal role in its ecosystem, where some of its activities included spreading truffle spores, helping to regenerate the soil and creating burrows that support native plant growth.
Mulligans Flat Woodlands Sanctuary began reintroducing these marsupials in 2012, and there was now a robust population onsite.
Dr Jason Cummings of the Woodlands and Wetlands Trust said they were looking forward to seeing the bettong population grow and making bettongs available for other sanctuaries around Australia.
“Our partners have been working for more than a decade to establish and expand the sanctuary so we can foster new populations of threatened species and start to reverse the declines of native fauna,” he said.
The ACT government has been working with the Commonwealth, the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, the ANU and other organisations to boost populations and establish up to six new bettong colonies.