The South West Catchments Council has launched a crowdfunding campaign to stop the critically endangered Western Ringtail Possum becoming extinct in the wild.
Running throughout November, the campaign will see the not-for-profit community organisation aim to raise $30,000 to help conserve the iconic marsupial.
All funds will go to assist local community groups currently undertaking possum conservation activities in the South West.
SWCC chief executive officer Damien Postma said South West residents are lucky to share their backyard with a critically endangered species.
“We are calling on our community to take action and help up protect and conserve this unique marsupial before it’s too late,” he said.
“Donations will help make a real difference in the possum’s future.”
Funds raised by the campaign will be invested in research, rehabilitation of rescued animals and habitat restoration.
The campaign aims to purchase items such as milk, heat pads and incubators for sick or injured possums in care, tree seedlings to revegetate local possum habitat, nest boxes for use in urban areas and transponder tags to track released rehabilitated possums back into their native habitat.
A special event is planned to thank generous supporters, with anyone donating more than $200 eligible to attend a ‘VIP nibbles and night stalk’ in Busselton in December to experience the possums up close and personal.
Unique to WA’s South West, it is estimated that the Western Ringtail Possum population has reduced by 90 per cent and there are only about 8,000 left in the wild.
The species faces a number of threats to its survival, including habitat destruction, predation by foxes, feral cats and domestic pets and death from vehicle strikes.
To donate, visit chuffed.org/project/wrp.