Thanks to an effective feral animal control program and regular wildlife monitoring, Forestry Corporation has recorded a significant increase in the numbers of threatened long-nosed potoroos in the State forests around Eden.
Ecologist Peter Kambouris said the long-nosed potoroo was one of the first species to increase in population since Forestry Corporation changed its baiting in 2008 from a traditional seasonal program to ongoing landscape control spanning more than 100,000 hectares.
Numbers have become so robust that Forestry Corporation has succesfully partnered with Parks Australia to translocate potoroos from State forests to promote populations in other areas. Spring 2014 saw the successful release of 23 potoroos from forests around Eden into Booderee National Park near Jervis Bay, where the local potoroo population had become extinct, and a further 13 were relocated in Spring 2015.
“The reintroduction of the species from State forests into the national park estate is a pivotal milestone in the strategic management of pest animals and threatened species in NSW. It is evidence that declining trends in critical weight range mammals can be reversed with effective management of their threats and monitoring,” said Peter.
The potoroos were trapped, checked, and released into Booderee National Park on the same day in order to minimise any stress on the animals. Attention was given to ensuring the potoroos represent a particular male to female ratio, reproductive status, age and condition. Before being released into the national park estate, the animals were given a rigorous health check by specialist vet staff from Taronga Conservation Society Australia before being fitted with micro chips and radio trackers to monitor their movements and their health in their new environment.
Monitoring shows that the potoroos are fully utilising their new habitats within the park, with signs of breeding regularly detected among the released potoroos.