incorporating a project funded by a Holsworth Wildlife Research Endowment, Ecology of the northern quoll (Dasyurus hallucatus) in the Pilbara. (2017-2018),
WA Department of Biodiversity, Conservation & Attractions, $78,000
Holsworth Wildlife Research Endowment, $5500
Associate Professor Dale Nimmo, Harry Moore (PhD student)
The study area for this project is the Pilbara region of Western Australia, one of the last strongholds for northern quolls which have undergone a dramatic decline in their distribution over the past century.
The project complements the Pilbara Region Quoll Monitoring Program run by Dr Judy Dunlop, WA Department of Biodiversity, Conservation & Attractions where populations of northern quolls at 10 sites across the Pilbara have been monitored yearly for the past four years, usually by live trapping.
The funding for this project supports the work of ILWS PhD scholarship recipient Harry Moore. Harry, who is studying the interactions between the Northern Quolls (an endangered marsupial), predators and fire, and in particular, the dynamics of different habitats and landscapes, is using 120 camera traps in 24 landscapes spread across 6000sq km.
The camera traps are being used to monitor quolls and predators, in the context of the fire history, composition and extent of the quoll's rocky habitat.
The researchers are also modelling the decline of northern quolls at the national scale and the trends associated with this. As well, they will be looking at the interactions of quolls and predators such as dingoes and cats.
The aims of the project are an enhanced understanding of key habitat requirements for northern quolls; their habitat use; and the key threats to northern quolls so as to better manage for their conservation and protection.