Meet the Maremmas this Summerby I AM WARRNAMBOOL
The start of Summer means the return of Little Penguins to Middle Island in Warrnambool, and the Guardian Maremma Dogs who protect them.
For Ambassador Maremma Dogs Avis and Amour, summer is the time to spread the story of the world’s first conservation project to use dogs for wildlife conservation, as they gear up for the 2019-20 Meet the Maremma Tours.
It is estimated that 800 penguins nested on Middle Island in 1999, which reduced to less than 10 by 2005 due to fox attacks. Since 2006 Maremma Guardian Dogs have been trained to protect Middle Island's Little Penguins from foxes, allowing the population to slowly build to well over 140 penguins today.
The interactive Meet the Maremma tours are your chance to learn more about this world first award winning project that relies on the assistance of businesses, organisations and volunteers to help with penguin monitoring.
Warrnambool Mayor Tony Herbert said that Meet the Maremmas Experience is always a popular summer attraction for locals and visitors to the region. Cr Herbert revealed that:
‘The Visitor Information Centre has been taking tour enquiries from eager customers for a number of months now, so it with great pleasure we announce that tours are now live and bookable. Tours will begin Sunday the 21st of December and over the Easter school holidays.’
Meet the Maremma Tours are offering family friendly times at 10.30am, 2pm and 4pm over Summer. By attending the tour, you are supporting the ongoing success of the Middle Island Penguin Project. All profits from the tours go towards the care of the Middle Island Maremma dogs.
Tours can now be booked from www.visitwarrnambool.com.au, in person at Warrnambool Visitor Information Centre located at 89 Merri Street and or by calling 1800 556 111.
Please note: tours do not go onto the island.