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Canberra Today 18°/23° | Monday, March 4, 2024 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

The eastern quoll returns


SIMON Corbell has announced that eastern quolls were introduced reintroduced to the ACT region last night, having been absent from the area for more than half a century.

The release last night was part of the introduction of 14 eastern quolls into Mulligans Flat Woodland Sanctuary this week

“The eastern quoll was once widespread across south-eastern Australia but became victim to clearing, grazing, introduced predators and control programs,” Simon said.

“Eastern quolls have only survived in the more pristine conditions of Tasmania, along with many other small and medium-sized mammals that no longer live on the mainland.”

“Despite being shy and nocturnal the introduction of this small carnivore could ultimately help with rabbit population control.

“Because of their role in helping to regulate prey species, quolls and other predators are disproportionately important in the functioning of ecosystems, so this is an important milestone in the sanctuary’s ongoing restoration.

“The project could see a total of up to 32 eastern quolls from Tasmania and a matching 32 captive eastern quolls from Victoria translocated into Mulligans Flat Woodlands Sanctuary over the next two years.

“The ACT Government established the Mulligans Flat Woodland Sanctuary in 2009 with the goal of restoring the woodlands to pre-European conditions, reintroducing native animals and monitoring their effects in the woodland ecosystem.

“The quoll reintroduction is part of a major $1.8 million cash and in-kind Australian Research Council Linkage Project ‘Bringing back biodiversity’.

“The project is a research partnership between the ACT Government, The Australian National University, CSIRO and the James Cook University. Other major partners in the project are the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industry, Parks, Water and the Environment and the Mt Rothwell Biodiversity Interpretation Centre.”

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