The vertebrate fauna of Wollondilly River Nature Reserve

Overview

This project aims to record the fauna values of Wollondilly River Nature Reserve. This relatively small nature reserve protects just over 900 hectares of the rugged Wollondilly Valley landscape. It is divided into two portions that lie in the Wollondilly Valley, bordered by the Wollondilly and Wingecarribee Rivers. The reserve was created in 2002.

The nature reserve is characterised by very steep slopes, rocky outcrops, clifflines and scree slopes. The vegetation of the reserve was mapped in 2003, identifying seven communities within the reserve.

The main results of the project are as follows:

  • A total of 133 animal species have been recorded within the reserve, 77 of which had not been recorded previously. An additional 65 species, many of which are likely to occur within Wollondilly River Nature Reserve, were recorded in the surrounding areas.
  • 15 threatened animal species have been recorded within or around the reserve. These include seven diurnal birds, two large forest owls, three arboreal mammals and three insectivorous bats. The project report includes profiles for 15 that are likely to occur within habitats within Wollondilly River Nature Reserve, providing details of existing records, potential habitat and likely threats.
  • Glossy black-cockatoos proved to be particularly widespread in and around the reserve, and new records of the koala were also made, confirming anecdotal evidence of this species in the Wollondilly Valley.
  • No evidence of brush-tailed rock-wallabies was found, though anecdotal reports suggest they may still occur in small numbers to the north and west of the reserve.
  • Goats were found to be widespread and abundant, and are likely to be having a significant impact on the vegetation of the reserve. Records of other introduced mammals and birds were collected to help local DEC staff plan where to undertake management programs.
  • The importance of the corridor of vegetation connecting the eastern portion of Wollondilly River Nature Reserve with Joadja Nature Reserve was noted.

The project report includes a list of future survey work that would cover shortfalls of the current survey and allow targeted research to be conducted in the future.

All of the records collected during the survey have been entered into the Atlas of NSW Wildlife, which can be accessed by park management staff and members of the public.

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Page last updated: 17 March 2014