OUR STORIES

Latest Updates

Searching for Quolls Around the Monaro

Blog Post - Searching for Quolls Around the Monaro

The Spotted-tailed Quoll (aka Tiger Quoll) is the largest native marsupial carnivore left on the Australian mainland. Sadly its population has declined to the point where it now occupies just 50% of its original pre-European range.

In southern New South Wales the quoll’s status is still mostly uncertain, particularly away from major expanses of timbered country including Kosciuszko National Park and along the coastal escarpment. There is actually no information to suggest that the species persists in the fragmented timbered landscape that is typical along the edge of the Monaro Tablelands.
 
Commencing in autumn 2016, a new project funded by FNPW will aim to survey for the species in such landscapes, including private tenures, to establish where quolls still occur. The sites recorded during this program will hopefully form part of a broader regional network of places where the ongoing status of quolls can be re-measured over time against a backdrop of different land management activities.

 

The general landscape in which the study is taking place is well known to me. Having conducted extensive studies for quolls elsewhere in southern New South Wales, a logical geographic gap in sampling became apparent. Preliminary surveys in some areas around the fringe of the Monaro, done in conjunction with other NPWS staff as well as private landholders, have shown promise with new records of quolls obtained.

 

Through the next two winters, Dr Andrew Claridge from NSW National Parks and Wildlife, his colleagues and volunteers will use a combination of remote infrared cameras and mapping of latrine sites to detect quolls in key areas around the Monaro. Latrine sites are discrete places in the landscape that quolls repeatedly return to and deposit scats—for communication purposes. Latrine sites tend to be on flat surfaces such as rocks and the tops of logs. In short, quolls will be recorded through indirect rather than direct means such as trapping. This means it’s better for both the animal and quoll researcher!

 

The success of the project will be measured by a number of factors including the number of new localities discovered, the range of land tenures visited for surveying, the involvement of private landholders, and improving awareness and understanding of quolls in the community.

 

Stay tuned to hear what the findings show. There may well be some previously unknown quoll populations to report on.

 

What other conservation work does FNPW support?

Find out more

Fundraising

Help create a NEW 60,000 hectare National Park to protect half a billion years of history

Your donation will enable FNPW to connect habitat and protect endangered native animals Find out more...