Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) has reintroduced the Eastern Pygmy Possum to the heart of Australia’s biggest city, with the release of six of the tiny marsupials at North Head Sanctuary in Sydney this month. The possums, which are a threatened species in NSW, have been extinct at North Head for decades. Their reintroduction is part of AWC’s mission to reverse the tide of extinctions ravaging Australia’s mammals.Read more...
Feral herbivore control at North Head
Rabbit proof fencing to protect Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub.
Rabbits are recognised as a key threat to Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub (ESBS); rabbit grazing has the potential to dramatically reduce post-fire regeneration. Intensive rabbit grazing after fire may result in long-term changes to ESBS species composition.
Control measures across the headland include baiting and shooting, conducted by NSW NPWS and Harbour Trust.
AWC in conjunction with the North Head Sanctuary Foundation have implemented an integrated research program to evaluate the effectiveness of prescribed burning in combination with feral-proof fencing to reduce grazing pressures by feral rabbits. Results to date have indicated that fencing around newly burnt patches of ESBS can promote regeneration of vegetation and increase its structural and floristic diversity following fire.
Black Rats are also an important feral herbivore (and predator) on North Head. AWC’s strategy for removing Black Rats is to reintroduce the native Bush Rat and assist it so that it can outcompete the feral Rat.