As bushfires blackened forests last summer, one tree species was protected by a specialist team of firefighters: the Wollemi pine.
These trees have a deeply ancient lineage dating back to when dinosaurs walked Gondwana 100 million years ago. Back then, rainforests – including Wollemi pines (or their cousins) – covered what became Australia.
So when a handful of Wollemi pines were discovered alive in 1994 on the brink of extinction, it caused a frenzy of interest that has barely died down among plant enthusiasts. MORE
Header image: An army of conservation experts helped save wild Wollemi pines from last summer’s bushfires. Credit: AAP Image/Supplied by NPWS.