The Wollemi Pine was thought to be extinct for 60 million years until it was accidentally discovered in 1994 by David Noble during a weekend bushwalk 150km from Sydney. Our living fossil captures the imagination and the attention of the world because it offers us a window into the past. To protect it's future, scientists have been researching ways to ensure this curious and critically endangered conifer can survive the threat of fire and disease.
Principal Research Scientist, Dr Cathy Offord, is one of the few people who have been allowed to trek to the secret canyon site where some trees as old as 1000 years call home in Wollemi National Park. Take a trip down memory lane and look ahead to the future with Dr Cathy Offord in the fourth episode of our new Branch Out podcast, No Plants No Past: Protecting Our Prehistoric Pine.
Dr Offord has been at the forefront of protecting the Wollemi Pine for over 20 years and leads a team of scientists performing interesting experiments involving flames and chemical treatments to protect our precious pinosaur from being wiped out by catastrophic bushfires or disease. You’ll also learn about its fascinating survival tricks, such as the ability to grow up to 150 trunks and self-fertilise with its male and female reproductive cones! Check out the images below.
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Between episodes, head over to our science page to learn more about how world leading scientists are developing solutions to the world’s most critical environmental and biodiversity issues.