Matt Smith's End of the Spectrum

Melbourne-based writer and journalist. Purveyor of finally crafted radio plays. A Muppet of a man.

The Lord Howe Island Stick Insect


The Lord Howe Island Stick Insect (Dryococelus australis) is one of Australia’s rare ecological success stories. Long thought to be extinct on Lord Howe Island following the introduction of rats, it was rediscovered on Ball’s Pyramid, a tall rocky outcrop 23km southeast of the island.

How the insect came to be on the rocky outcrop no one is sure, but in 2002 four insects were recovered. Melbourne Zoo came to the rescue establishing a breeding program and so far, more than 11,000 individuals have been bred.

I interviewed Nicholas Carlisle (Senior Research Scientist, NSW Office of Environment & Heritage) and Rohan Cleave (Entomologist, Melbourne Zoo) to investigate the second chance of the Lord Howe Island Insect.

You can listen to the interview now on the ABC RN The Science Show website.


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