The wide-reaching support of the conservation efforts for Middle Island’s Little Penguins was again demonstrated on the afternoon of the 22nd of April. Over 70 people gathered to help celebrate the achievements of Maremma Project and Little Penguin Monitoring Program since the project trial commenced in 2006.
Presenters from Warrnambool City Council, Warrnambool Coastcare Landcare Group and Nature Glenelg Trust were joined by the familiar faces of volunteers and contributors, past and present, of the projects. It was also a great opportunity to meet new people, with a number of interested members of the public coming along to learn more about the Maremma story. The current guardians of the Little Penguin colony, Maremma dogs Eudy and Tula, also didn’t miss out on the photo opportunity, and took a small break from their off-duty home to join the crowd.
Since the severe predation of the Little Penguin’s through the 1990’s and early 2000, results from the current and previous seasons of the monitoring program suggest a gradual and steady recovery of colony numbers since the Maremma dogs arrived. Partnerships and community support, like that demonstrated on Sunday the 22nd of April, will be important to the Maremma Project and the plight of the Middle Island Little Penguins into the future.
The event also received some great media coverage in the Warrnambool Standard.