Conservation organisation Aussie Ark, alongside the Australian Reptile Park have been very busy with their newest bundles of joy – twin brother Tasmanian devils. The tiny devils are already showing cheeky personalities, and love keeping surrogate dad Billy on his toes.
Pickles and Cheese are 4 months old and have already stolen the hearts of all the staff at Aussie Ark and the Australian Reptile Park!
These young joeys were born at Aussie Ark as part of the organisation’s insurance population for the endangered Tasmanian devil. The joeys are calling the Australian Reptile Park home for now and are being hand raised by Billy Collett.
“I’m lacking a little sleep at the moment, feeding these guys every few hours is hard work, but I wouldn’t change a thing!” said Billy Collett. “They’re already showing off their personalities and I’m excited to watch them grow”
“Tasmanian devils are one of the most iconic native species we have here in Australia. Looking at these two it’s easy to see why! They love to get up to mischief,playing with each other and climbing everything!” He continued.
Over 90% of Tasmanian devils have been lost in the wild and they’re facing a bleak future, but through the Aussie Ark breeding program we’re working towards creating a long-term future for this species, and Pickles and Cheese are a big part of that. The devils at Aussie Ark are protected from the threat of the deadly facial tumour disease, which has nearly wiped out the wild population.
Aussie Ark celebrated a successful breeding season this year, with 53 Tasmanian devil joeys confirmed. 9 of which were born in the wilds of their protected Barrington Wildlife Sanctuary.
“Breeding season is always a highlight for Aussie Ark. Nothing beats knowing that we have played a part in the protection and survival of an endangered Australian species” said Dean Reid, Aussie Ark operations Manager.
He continued “We’re excited to see how Pickles and Cheese flourish over the next 8 months, before they return to Aussie Ark and re-join the program”
In eight months’, time, Pickles and Cheese will make their return to Aussie Ark and be released into a wild protected sanctuary – the largest of its kind for Tasmanian devils. Aussie Ark’s population of Tasmanian devils are free from the devastating devil facial tumour disease (DFTD) that plagues wild populations.
Aussie Ark relies solely on the community to continue its work and ensure a future for threatened native species. Symbolic Tasmanian devil adoptions are available from Aussie Ark’s website. Every adoption helps secure a future for this iconic Aussie species!