Apudthama Cape York Rangers have located a rare species of turtle, not documented for 25 years1, while training with Origin staff on far northern Cape York Peninsula.
Little is known about the conservation of the Jardine River Painted Turtle and it was feared the species had fallen victim to feral pigs in the region.
Origin LNG staff were training on Cape York with the Indigenous Land and Sea Rangers from the Apudthama Land Trust and were assisting with the rangers’ efforts to find the elusive turtle.
The rangers are employed through the Northern Peninsula Area Council with funding from the Queensland and Commonwealth Governments.
Origin Regional Manager Rob Hart is attending the remote training exercise and has been involved in previous attempts to assist rangers to scientifically document the species.
"The discovery is tremendous news and we’re very proud to have worked with the local rangers to confirm the turtle still exists.
"There have been unsuccessful attempts over several decades to locate this rare turtle and I believe the species was about to be added to the ‘Endangered’ list.
"Training with the Apudthama Rangers delivers greater cultural awareness for Origin staff, while also providing valuable lessons for us about operating in remote regions and how we can achieve better integration among our team members involved in this innovative program.
Fostering improved leadership, team work and emergency response amongst our staff is an important learning that we can share right across Origin, as our various business units find better ways to work together to deliver large and often complex projects," Rob said.
This collection and scientific recording of the Jardine River Painted Turtle was confirmed by an officer from the Threatened Species Unit within the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP).
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- The Jardine River Painted Turtle was last collected in 1989 – Summary – Schaffer, J. and Doupé, R.G. (2009) What for the future of the Jardine River painted turtle? ACTFR Report No. 09/06. Australian Centre for Tropical Freshwater Research, Townsville: https://research.jcu.edu.au/research/tropwater/resources/09%2006%20Jardine%20River%20painted%20turtle.pdf