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About this book
About this book
Wildlife conservation in Australia owes much to the pioneering ideas of a controversial mathematics professor whose attention-grabbing actions made him both loved and hated. His company fell from a great height, but its influence has been enormous. This is the story of that enterprise and the man who founded it. Stephen Davey worked alongside John Wamsley for many years and has compiled this memoir using taped conversations and archival material.
Customer Reviews (1)
6 Dec 2021
Written for Paperback
I heard about John Wamsley some years ago from an old zookeeper friend in Australia. He has the can-do spirit of the 60s counterculture but is hampered on all sides by government bureaucracy (large and small ) and even the greens are against him (I'm not sure why). But he gets it done by fair means or foul until the edifice he creates gets too big too soon and implodes. Maybe it's a good guide as to what to avoid when trying to rewild, but it's a very entertaining book whatever. He was one of the only people to successfully breed Duck-billed platypus but was prevented from sending a pair to Tokyo zoo for which they would have paid a lot of money which would have helped fund other projects. Nowadays Australian zoos pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to rent Giant Pandas from China which pays for their panda conservation projects. Basically, he was ahead of his time and a prophet in his own land.
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John Wamsley has a doctorate in mathematics and is recognised for his work in wildlife conservation, with specific regard to the use of feral-proof fencing. He was only the second person in the world to successfully breed platypus in captivity and in 2003 he received recognition for his pioneering work, receiving the Prime Minister's Award for environmentalist of the year.
Stephen Davey is a retired horticulturist and writer who has worked alongside John Wamsley for many years and has compiled this memoir using taped conversations and archival material.