Durrell conservationists helping threatened wildlife after Mauritius oil spill

Mauritius has declared an emergency after a boat began leaking fuel off its coast. Credit: PA

Durrell conservationists have stepped in to save some of the most threatened wildlife in Mauritius after an oil spill just off its coast. The island's been declared as in a "state of environmental emergency" after a ship carrying nearly 4,000 tons of fuel ran aground two weeks ago.

This photo shows divers using a boom to help contain oil leaking from the MV Wakashio. Credit: PA

The team are going to start removing some of the animals from their habitat on the islands and taking them into temporary safe-keeping. By doing this, they hope to avoid seeing the already endangered species become even more threatened.

It is not the first time the zoo has come to the rescue in this way - during its long-term partnership with the island, it saved the orangetailed skink, after a different environmental challenge involving predators in Mauritius left it bordering extinction.

Credit: ITV Channel TV

Officials, including the Prime Minister in Mauritius have warned of a long road to recovery - both in terms of the economy and the environment.

As for the work of Durrell, Dr Dickie added that islanders can help them, help Mauritius by donating to the Trust.

  • WATCH Lesley Dickie explain more about the situation in Mauritius...