A BARRINGTON Tops conservation group hoping to help double the population of endangered brush-tailed rock wallabies says there are promising signs for the species after its habitat was ravaged in summer's horror bushfires.
Aussie Ark said the wallaby species lost about 80 per cent of its habitat to the flames, putting an animal already at risk in even more peril.
"The bushfires have sped up their decline, and it is frightening," Aussie Ark president Tim Faulkner said.
The group has been making emergency food drops for displaced wildlife during the pandemic lockdown, and says despite the serious dangers to species survival the fires created there are reasons for optimism.
The most recent food drop led to a sighting of a female brush-tailed rock wallaby with a joey, with Mr Faulker dubbed "the best sign of the species quite literally bouncing back."
The group has been working with the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service and the NSW Saving Our Species program to protect the species in the Curracabundi National Park area.
Senior Saving our Species project officer Katherine Howard said things had changed since an initial January assessment found many wallabies were stuck without much food or water.
"Follow up camera monitoring by NPWS staff revealed at least 26 brush-tailed rock wallabies accessing the food provided, as well as other native animals like red-necked wallabies, wombats and brush-tailed possums - so these food drops have really helped to sustain our wildlife," Ms Howard said.
Aussie Ark is also pushing to double its captive population of the species.
IN OTHER NEWS
While you're with us, did you know the Newcastle Herald offers breaking news alerts, daily email newsletters and more? Keep up to date with all the local news - sign up here