The Barren Grounds-Budderoo Quollidor project

The Quollidor Saving our Species project aims to improve the resilience and size of the Barren Grounds-Budderoo spotted-tailed quoll population.

Spotted tail Quoll (Dasyurus maculatus)The spotted-tailed quoll is the Australian mainland’s largest carnivorous marsupial and is listed as a threatened species.

Threats

Spotted-tailed quolls compete for food and are killed by introduced predators such as foxes. They are also threatened by habitat loss and damage.

The Quollidor

The ‘Quollidor’ is the name given to the connected vegetation corridor that links the quoll’s habitat from the South Coast escarpment forests, to the Metropolitan Special Area water catchments across to the southern Blue Mountains.

Infra-red camera surveys have revealed that quolls are still present in the Barren Grounds Nature Reserve and Budderoo National Park. Because quolls have huge home ranges, from 300 to 3000 hectares, we know they will be moving from these reserves onto the private land surrounding the Quollidor.

Read more about Quolls, Quoll ecology and conservation programs across NSW.

The project

The Quollidor Project has been established under the NSW Saving our Species program to improve the monitoring of quolls in the Barren Grounds-Budderoo region.

To help quolls survive in this region we need to:

  • understand more about their population health and breeding behaviour
  • care for the vegetation corridor (Quollidor) that links their habitat
  • increase and manage areas of habitat in and around the reserves
  • control foxes in a way that doesn’t harm the quolls.

How land managers can help

If your property is near the Barren Grounds – Budderoo reserves:

  • Help us with our camera-monitoring program. Our remote cameras photograph the species that interact with our quoll monitoring stations. We will upload the images to the Quollidor expedition on the Digivol website each month, and you can help by conducting the initial species identifications! Sign up to the Quollidor expedition to track the reserve’s quoll population first hand!
  • Participate in a free BioBlitz flora and fauna survey run by OEH and discover what special animal and plant species live right in your backyard.
  • Commit to twice-yearly fox control on your property. You’ll get up-to-date information and support from South East Local Land Services and other fox-control experts, plus free 1080 Vertebrate Pesticide and Canid Pest Ejector Training and free fox baits for your property twice a year.
  • Preserve key habitat for the quoll’s preferred prey: possums, gliders, bandicoots and potoroos.

Our Quollidor partners have established a network of infra-red cameras in important spotted-tailed quoll habitat. Each quoll has a unique spot pattern, so the cameras can identify individuals and tell us about population size, seasonal activity and their home ranges.

The camera network also gives us valuable information on feral animals that helps us improve control programs.

The project has identified Broger’s Creek, Upper Kangaroo River, Carrington Falls and Knights Hill/Pheasant Ground as priority areas for increased fox control that will support the intensive control programs already occurring in the national parks.

The Quollidor project is supporting private land managers to reduce fox numbers in these areas and increase the core area of enhanced Quollidor habitat.

We are inviting and supporting private land managers in these areas to join in a coordinated fox control program.

We are also planning to hold free BioBlitz flora and fauna surveys to help find out which species live on their land.

Fox control is already every land manager’s responsibility. For effective fox control we need to all cooperate, working at the same time over as large an area as possible and using a variety of control methods.

Ground baiting with 1080 poisoned baits is the most effective way to control foxes.  Coordinated group baiting on private land twice a year—in autumn and spring—increases the exposure of fox populations to baits and supports year-round fox baiting in national parks. Your pets will be safe during the brief baiting periods if they are kept away from baited areas.

Recent studies of more than 100 quolls in southern Kosciusko National Park, the Northern Tablelands and in south-east Queensland have all shown that ground-based and aerial 1080 baiting programs don’t affect quoll populations.

Up to half of the tracked quolls found and ate the poisoned baits, but only one quoll death was linked to the bait and that finding was uncertain. These results give us confidence that the risk of bait exposure to quolls is extremely low.

Read more about the recent 1080 studies

Contact OEH Wollongong to:

  • Participate in the Quollidor project.
  • Report activity of spotted tailed quolls and other threatened species.
  • Get help with private land conservation options, including Land for Wildlife, conservation agreements and BioBanking agreements.
  • Find out how to prevent quolls from taking your chooks.
  • Join the twice-yearly fox-control program.