NCIG Partners with National Parks and Wildlife for Green and Golden Bell Frog Conservation

February 29, 2024

Newcastle Coal Infrastructure Group (NCIG) is thrilled to announce a three-year partnership with the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) in collaboration with the NSW Government’s Saving our Species program, symbolising a joint commitment to safeguard the Ash Island population of Green and Golden Bell Frogs—the nation’s largest and most stable population.

Through this partnership, up to 28 artificial ‘cluster pond’ habitats will be constructed on Ash Island, within Hunter Wetlands National Park, to provide and enhance habitat for the endangered Green and Golden Bell Frog. This initiative seeks to increase habitat connectivity and provide refuge for the animals during times of drought. Enhanced connectivity is anticipated to stimulate increased movement between the southeast and northwest sections of Ash Island, fostering future frog breeding opportunities to maintain a sustainable population.

NCIG Manager Sustainability, Nathan Juchau, reflected on the significance of this partnership, saying “NCIG has worked for a number of years alongside the University of Newcastle and NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, to actively conserve the Green and Golden Bell Frog population on Ash Island.

He continued, “this partnership marks a significant stride forward in biodiversity conservation, showcasing the power of collaboration between industry leaders and environmental stewards. NCIG is proud to be supporting this important project, to help safeguard the Green and Golden Bell Frog into the future.

Each ‘cluster pond’ habitat will consist of specially designed tanks and troughs ranging from 500 to 1200mm in depth and up to 2400mm in diameter. The deep tank is designed for hydrologic isolation, shielding against potential risks such as flooding, seawater inundation, and intrusion by mosquito fish, and to provide refuge habitat during drought. Simultaneously, the shallow troughs are strategically positioned close to each deep tank to create ephemeral shallow and warm water environments—ideal for serving as breeding habitat of the Green and Golden Bell Frog.

By integrating these distinct elements into each cluster, the project aims to provide an environment that not only addresses the specific needs of the Green and Golden Bell Frog but also contributes to the overall success of our conservation efforts.

First Green and Golden Bell Frog Cluster Pond installed as part of the project. Photo Credit: National Parks and Wildlife Service.