COOTE, T., GARCÍA G. & CLARKE, D. (2019)

Fourth year of Partula species reintroductions into natural habitat on Tahiti and Moorea.

Tentacle 27 (February 2019): 35-38. ISSN 0958-5079.


The Partula tree snail reintroduction programme is almost unprecendented in the world of conservation in terms of the number of species extinct in the wild being repatriated to their ancestral home. After four years of reintroductions onto three of the four Society Islands where all 12 of the released taxa originated, the rapid dispersal and very low mortality rate on Tahiti and Moorea has transcended expectations. However, the failure on Raiatea due to predation by the New Guinea flatworm Platydemus manokwari highlights the need for constant vigilance. The first in a series of surveys on Raiatea and Huahine into the status of P. manokwari on those islands took place in 2018 and will continue early in 2019 in preparation for releases later in the year. Reintroduction in itself does not guarantee reestablishment but early results certainly give hope.  

This conservation progress has only been possible because of the long-term collaboration between the French Polynesian environmental agencies and the international zoo community together with IUCN’s SSC Conservation Planning, Mollusc and Reintroduction Specialist Groups, with additional funding support from the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund.


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