You may recall that 15 devils were relocated to Maria Island in late 2012. Since then the animals have been busy breeding and have now grown the island’s Tasmanian devil population to around 82 adults. Sadly, at least four of the devils followed in the Devil Island TV series have died due to old age (the average devil lifespan is up to five years).
This successful population growth has provided animals for release back onto the mainland.
In late August 2016, thirty-three healthy Tasmanian devils were released onto the mainland at Stony Head in Tasmania’s north. These devils have been immunised with a vaccine that has been developed to combat the devil facial tumour disease, which has wiped out more than eighty percent of the devil population since it emerged twenty years ago. These immunised devils will interact and breed with the wild, diseased population at the Stony Head release area, bolstering their genetic diversity.
Twenty-five of these released immunised devils have been fitted with satellite tracking collars so that scientists can monitor their progress. We wish them luck in the wild.
For further info check out the Save The Tasmanian Devil website.