Funding granted to save endangered spotted-tailed quoll in South Eastern Queensland

14 October 2019

Wildlife Queensland’s Quoll Seekers Network has been granted $33,540 from the state government to engage a quoll detection dog team to complete a series of surveys to inform and support the land management actions necessary to conserve the spotted-tailed quoll in the Mary Valley, South Eastern Queensland.

An infra-red camera monitoring program will also operate in conjunction with the detection dog surveys.

The spotted-tailed quoll is mainland Australia’s largest marsupial carnivore, longer than 75 cm nose to tail tip, and is the only quoll species in which spots continue from the body onto the tail.

It has a fragmented distribution along the east coast, occurring in forested areas and border ranges in South Eastern and Northern Queensland.

It is considered vulnerable in Queensland and endangered nationally.

Quoll detection dog team, Carnarvon Canines (Sparky and Lilly with Ecologist & Wildlife Detection Dog Specialist, Amanda Hancock)

“A huge challenge for threatened species conservation is understanding exactly where the target species still survives. This is certainly the case for quolls which are naturally timid, secretive and difficult to survey,” says Wildlife Queensland’s Projects Manager, Matt Cecil.

“Using the scent detection dogs enables Wildlife Queensland to survey a wide area with a very high likelihood of detecting quolls if they have moved through the survey location at some time in the past.

“A better understanding of where quoll populations still remain in South Eastern Queensland and especially within connected forests of the Mary Valley provides Wildlife Queensland with opportunities to discuss and implement conservation actions with relevant landholders, land managers and natural resource management groups.

“Quoll populations are under genuine threat of extinction in South Eastern Queensland and Wildlife Queensland is excited to continue assisting the conservation of these important native animals,” says Cecil.

The Community Sustainability Action Grants Program is providing $18 million over six years to community groups and individuals for innovative projects to address climate change, protect our unique wildlife and conserve Queensland’s natural and built environment.

The Wildlife Queensland Quoll Seekers Network ‘Detection Dog Surveys for Quolls’ project is one of 29 projects that have received funding under the grants program.

Minister for Environment, Leeanne Enoch, said these projects included supporting groups to plant more trees to enhance habitat and funding research to grow our understanding of a variety of species including threatened shorebirds, dolphins, quolls, snakes, frogs, butterflies and gliders.

Minister Enoch stated that “Under this round that specifically targets projects that protect threatened species, 29 successful recipients are receiving up to $100,000 for their local conservation projects.

“This is the first time, since the Community Sustainability Action Grants Program began in 2016, that there has been a specific threatened species category.

“The Palaszczuk Government is committed to ensuring our threatened species are protected, and this funding will fund on-the-ground projects that help restore important habitat and conduct important research into some of Queensland’s most vulnerable flora and fauna.”

See the full list of projects here.

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