DECEMBER 27 2019 A koala amid the fire. Pic: AUSSIE ARK AFTER assessing the state of native wildlife in the greater Barrington Tops, Aussie Ark president Tim Faulkner is calling for an urgent collaborative response to help save what is left. The Australian conservationist believes the mass loss of life among native animals deserves to be classed as a NSW Native Wildlife State of Emergency. During a recent visit by Aussie Ark and Australian Reptile Park staff to assess the drought and fire-affected areas, the wider region around Aussie Ark's sanctuary in the Barrington Tops - two hours from Scone - revealed devastating results. They had to relocate 50 endangered Hunter River turtles from dried up waterways, while 10 platypus were found and transferred, with five requiring veterinary care due to poor health conditions. The staff also monitored and provided food drops for Brush-tailed rock wallabies and assessed the possibility emergency intervention for the critically-endangered Manning River turtle. By definition, a State of Emergency is declared by a government in a situation of national danger or disaster resulting in the suspension of normal constitutional procedures in order to regain control of the situation. "I believe substantial investments have been seen by governments in fire-fighting, National Parks and the protection of private properties and infrastructure," Mr Faulkner said. "This is where the focus has been. "Nobody has declared a native wildlife crisis, yet that is exactly what it is - a native wildlife state of emergency. "So much has been lost already and it won't come back without help. "What is needed is a mass upscaling of initiatives and projects that directly impact native wildlife. "We need public and private partnerships, corporate, government and philanthropic groups, conservation groups along with the community to recognise the crisis and support organisations delivering results on the ground." Mr Faulkner admitted they must rebuild. "What is needed is a mass scale combined effort and it is needed now, not later," he said. "Many of the species affected were already at risk of extinction, such as koalas, Brush-tailed rock wallabies, turtles, quolls and platypus. "Entire populations and ecological communities have been entirely wiped off the face of the earth, some will never be what they once were. "If I could have one News Year's wish it would be that Australia steps up and addresses the native wildlife state of emergency and rebuild." As a not-for-profit organisation, Aussie Ark raises the necessary funds to continue its ambitious vision of providing a long-term future for Australia's threatened wildlife. Investment allows for the construction of captive facilities and predator proof fencing on large wild sanctuaries.