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Breeding for Conservation

Our award-winning research and breeding program for threatened Western Australian fauna has resulted in the wild release of more than 4,000 Zoo-bred animals.

For quarter-of-a-century, Perth Zoo has partnered with Parks and Wildlife to establish and run breeding programs to support the Species Recovery Plans for a range of native Western Australian fauna. We research the reproductive biology, growth and development of four key threatened species to assist with recovery and conservation efforts. Since 1992, more than 4,000 animals bred at Perth Zoo have been released into protected wild habitat to help secure a future for these species on the brink.

Numbat showing its stripes

Western Australia’s mammal emblem has suffered a staggering decrease in population since the arrival of Europeans in Australia.

White-bellied Frog

Australia has 200 species of frog which are found nowhere else. We are one of the most frog-diverse nations on the planet. But it's not all good news for frogs!

Weaned dibbler being held in hand

This attractive little Western Australian marsupial is one of the world’s rarest mammals, thought extinct until a chance rediscovery.

A Western Swap Tortoise hatching at Perth Zoo
Western Swamp Tortoise

The Western Swamp Tortoise is the most endangered reptile in Australia. Believed extinct for a century, it was rediscovered in 1953. By the 80s there were fewer than 30 left in the wild.

A Western Ground Parrot in a nest
Western Ground Parrot

There are thought to be fewer than 150 Western Ground Parrots in the wild. Perth Zoo is hoping to bring them back from the brink of extinction with a captive breeding program

Other Programs

The ultimate goal of a breeding program for native species is to get the wild population back to a point that the program is no longer needed at all! Here's some examples.