Australian Reptile Park and Aussie Ark Manning River Turtle Project 2018 campaign launch

Tim Faulkner and Dan Rumsey from ARP with Jacaranda Estate owner Mark Smith (centre) taste testing the Tipsy Turtle Vodka. Photo: Julia Driscoll
Tim Faulkner and Dan Rumsey from ARP with Jacaranda Estate owner Mark Smith (centre) taste testing the Tipsy Turtle Vodka. Photo: Julia Driscoll

The call is out for local community members and businesses to join together to help build an insurance population of our endangered Manning River turtle.

The official launch of a crowd funding campaign by Aussie Ark and the Australian Reptile Park (ARP), hosted by the Manning River Turtle Conservation Group took place at Wingham Memorial Services Club on Tuesday evening, August 21 in front of a small crowd of interested members of the public. 

One member of our community who is fully on board with the campaign is Jacaranda Estate’s Mark Smith.

Tim Faulkner and the Manning River Turtle Project

The Wingham vineyard owner has developed a lime infused vodka containing flakes of 24 karat gold he has named ‘Tipsy Turtle Vodka’. The bottle’s label features artwork of the Manning River turtle by local wildlife artist and illustrator Peter Schouten AM. Mark donated 55 bottles of the drop to the crowd funding campaign as a reward option for a donation, and will continue to donate $10 from every bottle of Tipsy Turtle Vodka sold at the cellar door to the cause.

Peter Schouten AM has donated his original painting of the Manning River turtle, framed, as a reward option. For those who would like the painting but can’t afford the original, there are 10 limited edition prints up for the taking.

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Rewards are matched to the level of funding commitment and range from $25 for a high resolution image of the turtle with a thank you, up to $8000 to become a project partner. This would suit a corporate donation and would earn the donor naming rights to a breeding pond with a plaque, naming rights of a turtle, a project partner office decal, a VIP tour of the facility once completed, regular email updates on the project’s progress, a high resolution image of your turtle with their name, a turtle talk from the ARP keepers at your work or school, and a video featuring Tim Faulkner with a personal thank you.

Dan Rumsey and the Manning River Turtle Project

The campaign is trying to raise $110,000 and as of Monday, August 27, six days since the launch, an amount of $18,458 has been raised. There are 26 days left to donate to the campaign.

Aussie Ark and ARP general manager and head of conservation, Tim Faulkner, along with Reptile Park TV regular Dan Rumsey, launched the campaign with a presentation on the Aussie Ark and Devil Ark facilities, and the plans for the facility they are raising funds to build to house the turtles off-exhibit at the ARP.

Take a look at the crowd funding campaign and see what rewards you can score at www.pozible.com/project/save-the-manning-river-turtle-1.

For more information on the Manning River turtle, visit the Manning River Turtle Conservation Group’s website at www.manningriverturtle.org.