Research

How do quenda use the urban landscape?

Quenda-friendly gardens

Can quenda poo help plants grow?

Are roaming cats a threat to quenda?

How do quenda use the urban landscape?

In order to conserve bandicoots in urban areas, we need to know more about how they use the urban landscape, including bushland reserves, corridors, and front and back gardens.

To do this, we will attach GPS trackers to quenda so we can track their movement over time. We will also set up motion-sensor cameras in bushland and in people’s gardens, to capture visits by quenda (and other animals like cats and foxes).

Quenda-friendly gardens

We are also very interested to find out how often quenda use resident’s front and back yards, and what makes a “quenda-friendly garden”. If you see quenda in your garden, or in bushland nearby, please let us know.

Can quenda poo help plants grow?

In a healthy ecosystem, there are complex ecological interactions between plants, digging mammals such as the quenda (southern brown bandicoot), and fungi.

Quenda eat underground fungi and pass spores in their scats (poo). This helps to disperse fungi and to encourage symbiotic relationships (called mycorrhizae) between fungi and tree roots. Mycorrhizal associations help the host plant to access water and nutrients and help keep trees healthy.

interrelationships
There are important ecological relationships between bandicoots (e.g. quenda in Western Australia), fungi, and plants.

We are going to see if adding quenda poo (containing fungi spores) to tuart tree seedlings enhances these symbiotic relationships and improves the growth and survival of these seedlings. Sowing of seeds will begin in February 2017, and we will plant seedlings in the field in June 2017. Monitoring of growth and survival will be ongoing.

We would love to get the community involved with planting and monitoring of these seedlings. Contact us for more information.

2017-01-11-11-30-32
Up close and personal with quenda poo!

Are roaming cats a threat to quenda?

Did you know that pet cats can roam up to 2.5km from their home? Many people are surprised to learn how far their cat travels and the impact their cat might have on local wildlife. To find out where cats are going and what they are doing in the City of Mandurah, we would like to put GPS trackers on pet cats to track their movements. We will analyse the overlap in space use of quenda and pet cats, to help us understand whether pet cats are a threat to urban quenda.

Would you like to find out where your cat is going when it’s not at home? Contact us for more information or if you would like to have your cat tracked.

gps-trackers