Collaborative Partnerships

Published: 22 June 2022
Last edited: 22 June 2022

The process of responding to the mass mortality event, from the initial discovery of turtle carcasses through to eventual reintroduction of captive bred juveniles to the wild, was done through collaboration between government authorities, researchers, in situ and ex situ conservation managers, and local people who were personally invested in the turtles’ wellbeing. The communities living around the Bellinger River derive pride from the species endemic to their corner of the world, and their concern and participation as citizen scientists played a large role in raising awareness and ensuring resources were directed to the turtles. The government authorities were the central facilitators of the response, seeking out expertise across many sectors to ensure a comprehensive analysis was done.

Classifications

Category
Alliance and partnership development
Co-management building
Collection of baseline and monitoring data and knowledge
Communication, outreach and awareness building
Education, training and other capacity development activities
Evaluation, effectiveness measures and learning
Management planning
Scale of implementation
Local
Phase of solution
Planning phase
Inception phase
Implementation
Monitoring
Documentation and dissemination of results

Enabling factors

The CPSG principle of neutral facilitation creates a collaborative and open-minded space to address conservation challenges. While the stakeholders involved in the response and workshop were from different sectors with their own motivations, the unifying end goal of developing a conservation plan that address all the risks the Bellinger River Snapping Turtle was facing was able to bridge those differences.

Lessons learned

Conservation plans are often limited by the information on which they are based. By engaging with a larger scope of stakeholders, diverse and previously unconsidered perspectives can be captured in the planning process. This ensures all risks are considered, generating a more comprehensive and well-rounded management plan and a comprehensive foundation for long-term survival in the wild. 

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