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Published on: Philanthropy

Taronga Western Plains Zoo officially opens its Platypus Rescue HQ

The world’s largest purpose-built platypus conservation centre, Platypus Rescue HQ, was officially opened on 13 February 2024 at Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo.

The state-of-the-art headquarters combines a research centre, rescue and rehabilitation facilities, and a pre-release area to prepare recovered platypus for release to the wild. On the facility’s opening day, the sole resident was 23-year-old Mackenzie, a Sydney-born platypus but in times of drought, bushfire or flood, the facility will be a sanctuary for up to 65 platypuses.  The NSW Government Minister for Climate Change and the Environment Penny Sharpe said the facility was all about “preparing for the worst while hoping for the best”.

Construction of the new $12.1 million Platypus Rescue HQ facility was jointly funded by the NSW Government, Taronga Conservation Society Australia and philanthropic donors including the Ottomin Foundation.

Ottomin Foundation Chair, Mr Richard Kovacs, attended the official event on behalf of the Ottomin Foundation and noted “the leadership shown by Taronga to save iconic species including the platypus is something the Ottomin Foundation truly values”.