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A first for Victoria’s marine mammals

18 December 2013

A new partnership was launched at Melbourne Zoo last week, with Zoos Victoria joining together with AGL Energy Ltd (AGL) to launch Victoria’s first, dedicated Marine Response Unit.

In a major boost for Victoria’s marine mammals, the AGL Marine Response Unit will have the capacity to respond to some of the hundreds of cases of marine mammal entanglement that occur each year in Victorian waters.

The unit brings together keepers and veterinarians from Melbourne Zoo, using their expertise to respond to sick, injured and distressed mammals in Port Phillip Bay and along the Victorian coastline.

AGL has committed to supporting the AGL Marine Response Unit for the next three years with an optional fourth year included. The energy provider will also become a Platinum Partner of Zoos Victoria.  

Zoos Victoria’s CEO, Jenny Gray, described the partnership as a first for both the Zoo and AGL, which brings together business, the Zoo and government to help protect and care for Victoria’s incredible marine wildlife.

“Victoria is home to such a wide array of wonderful marine animals and it is terrific that together with AGL, we can give them the priority they deserve,” Ms Gray said.

“AGL represents energy in action and is Australia’s largest investor in renewable energy. The partnership also provides Zoos Victoria with a fantastic opportunity to further our own credentials as the world’s first certified carbon neutral zoo.’

AGL’s General Manager Marketing, Retail & Sales, Mark Brownfield said AGL was delighted to partner with Zoos Victoria and help the Zoo to grow their conservation and sustainability programs.

“AGL is proud to support the important conservation work of Zoos Victoria by establishing Victoria’s first ever dedicated Marine Response Unit. The AGL Marine Response Unit will help improve the welfare and recovery rates of entangled seals and other marine wildlife by enabling an expert team from Melbourne Zoo to quickly respond to calls to assist marine wildlife.”

 “AGL will also support Zoos Victoria to increase their use of renewable energy by installing solar panels across all three Zoos Victoria sites.  In addition, AGL will work closely with Zoos Victoria to help improve its energy efficiency.”

Victorians are encouraged to contact the unit directly on 0447 158 676 to report sick, injured or distressed marine wildlife.