Fish, reptiles and amphibians.

Native fish species are well distributed throughout surveyed streams and rivers in the Tarkine region, along with coastal lagoons and estuaries. Similarly, the Tarkine is rich in frog species, with eight of Tasmania’s eleven frog species occurring in diverse parts of the Tarkine, including in the Tarkine’s rainforests, in Melaleuca swamps and scrub, and in the coastal lagoons and dune systems. Two threatened frog species, the Green and Golden Frog, and the Striped Marsh Frog, both occur in coastal lagoons, marshes and swamps of the Arthur-Pieman plains.

The diverse mosaic of vegetation and rocky habitats from the coast to the tops of the Norfolk Ranges together with a mild climate, provides good habitat for a variety of lizard species in that part of the Tarkine.

The Tarkine is particularly important for freshwater crustaceans – which are of global significance (PWS, 2001). One of the largest freshwater crustaceans in the world, the Tayatea, or Giant Freshwater Crayfish, inhabits the north of Tasmania and the Arthur River catchment – with the Tarkine a stronghold. This extraordinary creature, which can live for up to 40 years of age, and grow up to a metre in length, has been adversely affected by clearing of vegetation and recreational fishing, and is now listed as vulnerable.

A refuge for the Devil

The Tarkine is the home to the last disease free population of the Tasmanian Devil. The Tasmanaian Devil is being pushed to extinction by the fatal Devil Facial Tumour Disease. This disease has been estimated to have killed 80% of the Tasmanian Devil population in the past decade. As such the habitat of the Tarkine is critical to survival of this iconic species in the wild. Threats such as mining, logging and roading place the future of the Devil at risk.

Ten new mines for the Tarkine?

There are now ten new mines proposed for the Tarkine over the next five years, and the campaign to prevent this onslaught of destruction is heating up. Nine of these mines are Pilbara style open cut mines. The first two companies to submit for permits are Venture Minerals for their three proposed tin and iron ore mines at Mt Lindsay, and Shree Minerals for their proposed Nelson Bay River iron ore mine.