Scientists call for National Gene Bank for Species’ Future

Scientists call for National Gene Bank for Species’ Future

It has been revealed by conservation scientists that Australia has many imponderables to preserve and protect its threatened native wildlife. They have suggested to establish a national gene bank urgently if the concern has to be effectively addressed.

Although there are programs for native plants in seed banks of national and international schemes, no program has been devised yet for the country's native animals.

John Clulow is from Newcastle University's school of environmental and life sciences. He called for a national gene bank for threatened animals. He called for the same in a submission to a recent federal Senate inquiry into the effectiveness of species protection.

He highlighted the loss of four species of frog. The species included the northern and southern gastric-brooding frog. The species was reported to have become extinct in recent decades.

He told Fairfax Media, "Their extinction might have been prevented if we had genome resource banks for wildlife in place. For some species, a national biodiversity genome storage facility may be the difference between extinction and survival".

He said that extinction rates are the worst in Australia compared to rest of the world. Since European settlement, more than 20 birds and 20 mammals have been confirmed as lost.

The idea behind a national gene bank is to store sperm, eggs, embryos and other cells that would play a significant role in reviving those animals.

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