Endangered Spotted-tailed Quoll found in
Great Otway National Park
21st July 2014
An endangered Spotted-tailed Quoll has been sighted in the Great Otway National Park for the first time in 24 years. Related to the Tasmanian Devil, and colloquially known as the 'Tiger Quoll', the animal was caught on a remote camera set up as part of an ongoing program set up by Parks Victoria scientists and rangers to monitor the park's rich native mammal population. This follows the recent discovery of a hair sample.
Parks Victoria Chief Executive Dr Bill Jackson said it was an incredibly exciting find and an encouraging sign that fox control programs in the park were helping to protect native species.
"The Great Otway National Park is one of the few Victorian landscapes home to nearly all the mammals that would have been present at the time of European settlement," said Dr Jackson. "The presence of threatened and endangered species highlights just how important our parks are for conserving Australia's biodiversity. Other animals captured on camera during the monitoring program include threatened Southern Brown Bandicoots and Long Nosed Potoroos."
Parks Victoria Ranger Gary Summers said 40 remote cameras were first set up in 2009 in two locations within the Great Otway National Park; one with a fox baiting program in place and one without.
"Our preliminary observations show that the fox baiting has had a marked and positive effect on helping to protect the native mammal populations within the Great Otway National Park. We are lucky to have such a range of species here from the tiny ground-dwelling mammals such as the White-footed Dunnart, to the potoroos and bandicoots and the larger predators like the quoll."
"We will be working with staff from the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute in September this year to fully analyse the data collected over the past six years."
"This analysis will give us a great insight into the park's ecology and provide valuable information about how we continue to best manage such an important and healthy habitat and protect these species in the future."
The discovery follows sightings of the Spotted-tailed Quoll in the Grampians National Park over the past year, after the species was thought to be extinct in the area for over 140 years.
Spotted-tailed Quolls are listed as Endangered under the Federal Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act.
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