Do you own an acre or more of wildlife-friendly land? Whether it's some bushland behind the family home, part of a working farm, or a property dedicated purely to conservation, we would love to hear from you at the Wildlife Land Trust (WLT)! Begin the quick and easy membership process today through our online membership form.
The Wildlife Land Trust is Humane Society International's private land conservation network, launched in Australia in 2007 in an effort to support those preserving and protecting our vital native habitats and the animals that depend on them. Essentially an inclusive 'club' of conservation-minded landowners, the WLT works under the guiding principle of "humane stewardship" to protect not only vast and impressive landscapes, but also the smaller, humbler places that provide for the needs of all wildlife, rare and common species alike.
Since being initiated by The Humane Society of the United States in 1993, the WLT has grown considerabally internationally, and now protects more than 2 million acres of habitat in Australia, Canada, South Africa, USA, Belize, Romania, Jamaica, India, Indonesia, New Zealand and Peru. This global reach helps connect people with others doing similar work around the world, landowners with a passion for caring for their property and its inhabitants who selflessly provide the public a service through the conservation of biodiversity.
In Australia the number of member properties and the interest in the program grows daily, with approximately two new sanctuaries joining the network every week. The Australian count now exceeds 325 sanctuaries covering more than 42,500 hectares nationally, with our goal being to see the protection of one million acres of wildlife habitat across Australia in the Wildlife Land Trust sanctuary network, as well as to continue the expansion of WLT sanctuary partnerships internationally.
Wildlife Land Trust membership is quick, easy, and completely free of charge and legal obligation, and becoming a member will effectively complement any current arrangements landowners already have on their properties, legal or otherwise. Many WLT members are also involved in other habitat protection programs such as Land for Wildlife or conservation covenants, demonstrating that people find value in the varying but complementary aspects that the Wildlife Land Trust offers.
Membership benefits of the Wildlife Land Trust include:
- Becoming part of a continually growing national and international network of sanctuaries, promoting best conservation practices and protecting wildlife and habitats around the world;
- The facilitation of useful communication between sanctuary members, as well as HSI staff and experienced land managers and native wildlife rehabilitators;
- Help and advice regarding both the legal and ecological integrity of the property should it be required;
- The opportunity to talk about the invaluable work undertaken to protect important wildlife habitats through feature pages on our website and in our regular Wildlife Lands newsletter; and
- Wildlife Land Trust signs to erect on your property
If you have any questions about the Wildlife Land Trust program not covered by the information on the website, please call HSI/WLT Senior Program Manager Evan Quartermain on 1800 333 737 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The importance of private land conservation
Australia is fortunate to have one of the richest assemblages of endemic species on the planet, occupying an amazing diversity of habitats. Yet currently only 11.5% of the Australian landmass has some form of security as a protected area, and as a result we have one of the worst records for mammal extinctions and near extinctions of any developed country.
Protecting and preserving our habitats and ecosystems is essential to the survival of all wildlife, and every acre left unexploited safeguards native animals that desperately need our help to survive. The role of private lands has now become an integral part of the solution, and private landholders with a concern for wildlife and habitat protection are in the unique and important position to make a very real contribution to conservation efforts across the country.