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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: The vacant planting: limited influence of habitat restoration on patch colonization patterns by arboreal marsupials in south-eastern Australia

Published source details

Lindenmayer D.B., Mortelliti A., Ikin K., Pierson J., Crane M., Michael D. & Okada S. (2017) The vacant planting: limited influence of habitat restoration on patch colonization patterns by arboreal marsupials in south-eastern Australia. Animal Conservation, 20, 294-304


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Restore or create forest Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A replicated, site comparison study in 2002–2011 of 137 forest sites in New South Wales, Australia (Lindenmayer et al. 2017) found that replanted forest supported few common brushtail possums Trichosurus vulpecula or common ringtail possums Pseudocheirus peregrinus by 7–30 years after planting. The probability of a replanted site holding brushtail possums when surveyed 7–30 years after planting (0.02) was lower than that in old growth forest (0.44). For ringtail possums, the probability of occupancy in replanted forest 7–30 years after planting (0.07) was also lower than that in old growth forest (0.75). Greater tree cover in the surrounding area did not increase the probability of subsequent colonisation for either species (result presented as model coefficient). Sixty-five replanted forests and 72 old growth forests were surveyed. Most replanted forests were 7–30 years old and comprised local and exotic Australian plant species. Old growth forests were ≥200 years old. Marsupials were surveyed by spotlight, whilst walking at an average 3 km/h, 1–5 hours after dusk. At each site a 200-m transect was surveyed for 20 min. Sites were surveyed in winter 2002, 2003, 2008, 2009 and 2011.

(Summarised by Nick Littlewood)