Tag Archives: conservancy

Pink ears

Pink-eared duck Malacorhynchus membranaceus an endemic bird, can be found in anyplace in Australia especially after rain, but they are over-wintering in  Melbourne. Question is why? The small wetland was fenced-off from dogs/humans etc but was full of pacific black ducks and hard-heads. Guesstimate; 1000

How can so many birds find enough forage in such a small an area, is it because things are even more difficult inland? Is this species over-abundant outside the city. Or are city environments attractive in some way?

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Phascogale in the city

Most city slickers have never heard of, or would  recognize a phascogale. So I made one and installed it in Louis Joel Gallery Melbourne.

louis joelIts at least a meter long, so now there’s no excuses.  And if you’re wondering, that’s a Leadbeater possum  looking on. But you wouldn’t expect city slickers to know about them would you?

Dry County Species

In November 2014 I again travelled to AWC Scotia to help with pitfall surveying,  (a scientific recording of species occurrence/change). Monitoring which species actually still exist in this country is done effectively by Australian Wildlife Conservancy. Here’s a couple of little friends who live in arid western NSW. ningaui holdingThis is a Ningaui, a bit stunned by the morning sun, one of our smallest marsupials.

 

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And this is a velvet gecko.

 

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And here’s where they live, burnt out, no water and searingly hot. Amazingly the plants and animals still thrive.

 

 

Trapped Behind Wire

Rufous Hare-wallaby or Mala Largorchestes hirsutus

Mala, the smallest surviving hare-wallaby, now extinct on mainland Australia but once common in spinifex country.

Mala, the smallest surviving hare-wallaby, now extinct on mainland Australia (except behind wire)  but once common in spinifex country.

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The beautiful coat of Mala

Boodie or burrowing bettong Bettongia lesueur:   now extinct on the mainland (except behind wire) once lived in communal burrows over most of southern Australia. At Lake Mungo (NSW) huge circles of exposed light coloured earth indicate how large these systems once were. Invading rabbits simply moved into the bettong warrens displacing the marsupial owners.

Boodie young being weighed and measured, rudely interrupted from slumber by ecologist

Boodie young being weighed and measured, rudely interrupted from slumber by ecologist!

Ecologist Felicity L'Hotellier at work, Scotia Sanctuary NSW, winter 4am after starting at midnight. These people are dedicated. Understanding the biology and requirements of these animals is the first step in helping them survive in a fragmented and warming future Australia.

Field Ecologist Felicity L’Hotellier at work, Scotia Sanctuary NSW, winter 4am after starting at midnight. These people are dedicated. Understanding the biology and requirements of these animals is the first step in helping them survive in a fragmented and warming future Australia.

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The indignity of having one’s tail measured!

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Adult Burrowing bettong

Bridled Nailtail Wallaby Onychogalea fraenata: photographs do not do this animal justice. Adults present as both beautiful and tender. Joeys are even more beautiful, to my eye they have the proportions of the red kangaroo in miniature, the result is a fine and delicate creature which contrasts with its arid preferred home.

nailtail young Nailtail joey, a bucket of cuteness

By the 1950’s this wallaby along with their cousins the crescent nailtail were considered extinct everywhere but were rediscovered by an alert bushman in 1973. Once common it is now restricted to a tiny area of Qld, and also behind wire.

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