At the end of October last year we transferred 27 long-nosed potoroos to suitable habitat in Booderee National Park after they had been extinct in the area for many years. Since the translocation we’ve been monitoring the population closely, using camera and cage traps to determine their survival.
The potoroos have had us guessing the last couple of weeks. We didn’t see any potoroos for about three weeks, but we did see a red fox.
Small mammals are very vulnerable to predators such as foxes so we run a comprehensive – and very successful – fox control program using bait. This has reduced foxes to very low numbers, but at this time of year we see a number of young foxes moving into the park. Last week we buried the fox bait at the camera site where the fox was spotted.
That same day we saw a small potoroo at the site. Our potoroos were still alive! What a relief!
The next day we saw another potoroo at the site.
Just an hour later the fox was back – he sniffed around for 10 minutes before taking the bait.
Over the next couple of nights we had a number of visitors at the site, including a long-nosed bandicoot…
and a swamp wallaby.
We need consistent vigilance to save our endangered native mammals. We’ll continue our fox control program to keep fox numbers low enough for the long nosed potoroo to re-establish a population and reduce their risk of extinction.
Rachael, Booderee National Park