Life in the big city: identifying bandicoot presence in the urban matrix
thesisposted on 28.03.2022, 16:53 authored by Sonja Elwood
The greater Sydney region provides habitat for two species of Peramelidae, the southern brown (Isoodon obesulus obesulus) and long-nosed bandicoot (Perameles nasuta). Both species have suffered significant range contraction since colonisation, yet little is known of their ecology and behavior. The endangered southern brown bandicoot is found only in Sydney's northern national parks and is rarely sighted. The long-nosed bandicoot is listed as endangered in Sydney's inner west and Manly's North Head yet is a common exploiter of lawns and parks in other suburbs adjoining national parks. This study used GIS mapping and statistical analyses to examine five urban land use and four demographic variables likely influencing bandicoot presence in the Sydney urban matrix. Datasets include previously unused wildlife rescue and Council records mapped in five-year time slices over the past twenty-five years. The quality of datasets proved insufficient to establish significant relationships with all but one land-use variable, agricultural and rural lands, which showed a strongly negative association with bandicoot observations. This study demonstrates greater quality, larger scale datasets and the principles of ecologically sustainable development are necessary to make informed policy and planning decisions if longnosed bandicoots are to be sustained within the intensifying Sydney urban landscape.