The Tarkine is a Noah’s ark of plants and animals, being by far the largest wild natural region in North-West Tasmania. The Tarkine is a vital refuge for more than 60 species of plants and animals listed as rare, vulnerable or endangered. These include: the Tasmanian Wedge-tailed Eagle; the Spotted-tailed Quoll; the White Goshawk; the Tayatea (Giant Freshwater Lobster); the Southern Bell Frog; the Orange-Bellied Parrot; the Eastern Barred Bandicoot; and the beautiful Huon Pine.

The Tarkine also hosts significant populations of healthy Tasmanian Devils, which have recently been listed as endangered. The Tarkine’s Devil populations appear unaffected by the disease that is currently causing a devastating impact on the species in other parts of Tasmania. In some regions, there has been up to a 90% reduction in Devil numbers due to the disease. The Tarkine, being an expansive, wild, largely undisturbed landscape, may prove to be an important refuge for the future survival of the Tasmanian Devil, as well as a host of other important species.

The Tarkine is home to 28 species of land mammals, 132 species of sea, land and freshwater birds, 11 reptile species, 8 frog species and 13 species of freshwater fish, hundreds of species of insects, and many species of freshwater crustaceans.

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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.