Environment Social media saves the ray

Social media saves the ray

Imagine trying to save the giant panda from extinction if you didn’t know it lived in China.

That was the challenge conservationists faced for an animal even closer to extinction than the panda.

The critically endangered clown wedgefish had not been seen for 23 years, until it appeared in a social media post from a small-scale fishery.

Since then, researchers have been able to track the wild range of the ray to two islands in Indonesia.

Charles Darwin University ray expert Dr Peter Kyne said more could now be done to protect the clown wedgefish.

“It is impossible to implement any conservation measures when you don’t know where a species occurs,” he said.

Wedgefish are one of the most threatened animal groups, with their shark-like fins highly valued in the international shark-fin trade.

Don’t clown around – support Australian universities by signing the petition to Keep It Clever at the link below.