Events & Meetings

Join these upcoming events organised by Mackay Conservation Group

  • Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at 05:30 PM · 16 rsvps
    Mackay Environment Centre in Mackay, Australia

    Hunt for the Irwin's Turtle

    Irwin's_Turtle_800px.jpgCome along to the Mackay Environment Centre and hear from leading researchers about the current work to understand the unique Irwin's Turtle.

    When the the Australian continent separated from Gondawana about 180 million years ago, our freshwater turtles began a long journey of evolution distinct from turtles in other parts of the world. A unique species, Irwin's Turtle, evolved in isolation: a pink-nosed turtle that is able to survive for extended periods submerged by extracting oxygen from the water. It lives in the beautiful, crystal-clear waters of Urannah Creek, west of Mackay. 

    It wasn't until 1990 that Steve and Bob Irwin sighted a turtle they didn't recognise and photographed it. The photo was submitted to academic researchers who realised this was probably a new species. Three years later a specimen was captured and scientific understanding of this species began. In honour of the Irwins this species was named Elseya irwini (alias Irwin's Turtle)

    Scientists realised that this unique species was threatened by development, especially dams. In 2009 Elseya irwini was considered for listing as a threatened species but the application was rejected because there was insufficient information about its population and range. Since then, scientists have been putting in a lot of time and effort into better understanding this species. 

    Jason Schaffer is a freshwater ecologist with a special interest in turtles. He will present on the work that has been done to improved scientific knowledge of Irwin's Turtle. 

    Dr Cecilia Villacorta Rath is a researcher at James Cook University. She is developing techniques to understand the ecology of species in marine and freshwater systems by searching for DNA in the environment. 

  • Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at 05:30 PM · 32 rsvps
    Online Meeting in Mackay, Australia

    Hunt for the Irwin's Turtle - Online

    Irwin's_Turtle_800px.jpgJoin us online via Zoom and hear from leading researchers about the current work to understand the unique Irwin's Turtle.

    When the the Australian continent separated from Gondawana about 180 million years ago, our freshwater turtles began a long journey of evolution distinct from turtles in other parts of the world. A unique species, Irwin's Turtle, evolved in isolation: a pink-nosed turtle that is able to survive for extended periods submerged by extracting oxygen from the water. It lives in the beautiful, crystal-clear waters of Urannah Creek, west of Mackay. 

    It wasn't until 1990 that Steve and Bob Irwin sighted a turtle they didn't recognise and photographed it. The photo was submitted to academic researchers who realised this was probably a new species. Three years later a specimen was captured and scientific understanding of this species began. In honour of the Irwins this species was named Elseya irwini (alias Irwin's Turtle)

    Scientists realised that this unique species was threatened by development, especially dams. In 2009 Elseya irwini was considered for listing as a threatened species but the application was rejected because there was insufficient information about its population and range. Since then, scientists have been putting in a lot of time and effort into better understanding this species. 

    Jason Schaffer is a freshwater ecologist with a special interest in turtles. He will present on the work that has been done to improved scientific knowledge of Irwin's Turtle. 

    Dr Cecilia Villacorta Rath is a researcher at James Cook University. She is developing techniques to understand the ecology of species in marine and freshwater systems by searching for DNA in the environment. 

  • Tuesday, October 06, 2020 at 06:00 PM · 2 rsvps
    Mackay Environment Centre in Mackay, Australia

    Stop Adani Phone Jam

    phone_jam.pngWe have just seven weeks until some of Adani's current insurance expires - and we need to get another 9 insurance companies to rule out supporting Adani. 

    Our previous efforts have led to 80 companies ruling out working with Adani! Now we need everyone to get on to this final step. 

    We'll be meeting together to make our calls from the Environment Centre. After that we'll each be given the phone numbers of a couple of people on our list so we can ask them to join in the action as well. 

    When you sign up to stopadani.com/phonejam you will be given phone scripts and everything you need to make a call - including a text message at the time of your call.

    Sign up for as many calls as you can on this roster (make sure at least one of them is after 6pm on 6 October): 

    stopadani.com/phonejam