Study

Reintroduction of the burrowing bettong Bettongia lesueur (Marsupialia: Potoroidae) to mainland Australia

  • Published source details Short J. & Turner B. (2000) Reintroduction of the burrowing bettong Bettongia lesueur (Marsupialia: Potoroidae) to mainland Australia. Biological Conservation, 96, 185-196

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Release translocated/captive-bred mammals in areas with invasive/problematic species eradication/control

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

Release captive-bred mammals into fenced areas

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

Release translocated mammals into fenced areas

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Release translocated/captive-bred mammals in areas with invasive/problematic species eradication/control

    A study in 1993–1999 on an arid peninsula in Western Australia, Australia (Short & Turner 2000) found that following eradication of invasive species from a fenced area, a released population of burrowing bettongs Bettongia lesueur increased. In 1999, six years after initial releases, the population was estimated at 263–301 bettongs, with 340 individuals born between 1995 and 1999. The population died out due to fox incursion in 1994, but was re-established with further releases. In 1990, a 1.6-m tall wire mesh fence (with an external overhang, an apron to prevent burrowing and two electrified wires) was erected to enclose a 12-km2 peninsular, within which foxes Vulpes vulpes and cats Felis catus were eliminated by poisoning in 1991 and 1995, respectively. Outside the fence foxes were controlled by biannual aerial baiting with meat containing 1080 toxin, distributed at 10 baits/km2 over 200 km2. From October 1993, an additional 200 baits/month were distributed along the fence and roads across the study area. Cats were controlled by trapping and poisoning in a 100 km2 buffer zone. In May 1992 and September 1993, twenty-two wild-caught bettongs were transferred to an 8-ha in-situ captive-breeding pen. In September 1993 and October 1995, twenty wild-caught bettongs were translocated to range freely in the reserve. From 1993–1998, one hundred and fourteen captive-bred bettongs were released. Artificial warrens and supplementary food and water were provided in 1993, but not for later releases. Eighty released bettongs were radio-tagged. From 1991–1995, European rabbits Oryctolagus cuniculus were controlled within the fenced area using 1080 ‘one shot’ oats. Bettongs were monitored every three months using cage traps set over two consecutive nights, at both 100-m intervals along approximately 40 km of track, and at warrens used by radio-collared individuals.

  2. Release captive-bred mammals into fenced areas

    A study in 1993–1999 on an arid peninsula in Western Australia, Australia (Short & Turner 2000) found that following release into a fenced area where invasive species had been eradicated, a population of burrowing bettongs Bettongia lesueur increased. In 1999, six years after initial releases, the population was estimated at 263–301 bettongs, with 340 individuals born between 1995 and 1999. The population died out due to fox incursion in 1994, but was re-established with further releases. In 1990, a 1.6-m tall wire mesh fence (with an external overhang, an apron to prevent burrowing and two electrified wires) was erected to enclose a 12-km2 peninsular, within which foxes Vulpes vulpes and cats Felis catus were eliminated by poisoning in 1991 and 1995, respectively. Outside the fence foxes were controlled by biannual aerial baiting with meat containing 1080 toxin, distributed at 10 baits/km2 over 200 km2. From October 1993, an additional 200 baits/month were distributed along the fence and roads across the study area. Cats were controlled by trapping and poisoning in a 100 km2 buffer zone. In May 1992 and September 1993, twenty-two wild-caught bettongs were transferred to an 8-ha in-situ captive-breeding pen. In September 1993 and October 1995, 20 wild-caught bettongs were translocated to range freely in the reserve. From 1993–1998, one hundred and fourteen captive-bred bettongs were released. Artificial warrens, supplementary food and water were provided in 1993, but not for later releases. Eighty released bettongs were radio-tagged. From 1991–1995, European rabbits Oryctolagus cuniculus were controlled within the fenced area using 1080 ‘one shot’ oats. Bettongs were monitored every three months using cage traps set over two consecutive nights, at both 100-m intervals along approximately 40 km of track, and at warrens used by radio-collared individuals.

  3. Release translocated mammals into fenced areas

    A study in 1993–1999 on an arid peninsula in Western Australia, Australia (Short & Turner 2000) found that following release into a fenced area where invasive species had been eradicated, a population of burrowing bettongs Bettongia lesueur increased. In 1999, six years after initial releases, the population was estimated at 263–301 bettongs, with 340 individuals born between 1995 and 1999. The population died out due to fox incursion in 1994, but was re-established with further releases. In 1990, a 1.6-m tall wire mesh fence (with an external overhang, an apron to prevent burrowing and two electrified wires) was erected to enclose a 12-km2 peninsular, within which foxes Vulpes vulpes and cats Felis catus were eliminated by poisoning in 1991 and 1995, respectively. Outside the fence foxes were controlled by biannual aerial baiting with meat containing 1080 toxin, distributed at 10 baits/km2 over 200 km2. From October 1993, an additional 200 baits/month were distributed along the fence and roads across the study area. Cats were controlled by trapping and poisoning in a 100 km2 buffer zone. In May 1992 and September 1993, twenty-two wild-caught bettongs were transferred to an 8-ha in-situ captive-breeding pen. In September 1993 and October 1995, twenty wild-caught bettongs were translocated to range freely in the reserve. From 1993–1998, one hundred and fourteen captive-bred bettongs were released. Artificial warrens and supplementary food and water were provided in 1993, but not for later releases. Eighty released bettongs were radio-tagged. From 1991–1995, European rabbits Oryctolagus cuniculus were controlled within the fenced area using 1080 ‘one shot’ oats. Bettongs were monitored every three months using cage traps set over two consecutive nights, at both 100-m intervals along approximately 40 km of track, and at warrens used by radio-collared individuals.

Output references

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, terrestrial mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read latest volume: Volume 17

Go to the CE Journal

Subscribe to our newsletter

Please add your details if you are interested in receiving updates from the Conservation Evidence team about new papers, synopses and opportunities.

Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape Programme Red List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Bern wood Supporting Conservation Leaders National Biodiversity Network Sustainability Dashboard Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx British trust for ornithology Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Butterfly Conservation People trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust