The continuing ecological recovery of Macquarie Island demonstrates the effectiveness of starting at the bottom of the food web to generate landscape health. An initial focus on feral cats triggered a boom in rabbit and rat populations. Eliminating rabbits, rats and mice paved the way for predator removal and triggered a revival in vegetative habitat […]
Monitored since an introduction of calicvirus in 1996, a rabbit colony on Turretfield Research Centre (South Australia) is the longest serving, continually monitored rabbit research site in the world. Data from the site have helped deliver a better understanding of rabbit biology, the transmission and effect of bio-controls (RHDV, RHDV2 and myxomatosis), and rabbit genetics, […]
Current strains of myxomatosis are far more virulent than that released in 1950, but rabbits have increased resistance as well. Nonetheless, myxo is still important for rabbit control in Australia.
Videos presentations on the environmental and economic impact of rabbits, the latest research on how RHDV is working, and Easter Bilby as an advocate for rabbit control, are now available. The presentations are from a recent webinar co-convened by Rabbit-Free Australia and Centre for Invasive Species Solutions (CISS). The videos are available via CISS and […]
The eradication of ‘every last rabbit, cat and fox’ provided the foundation for the reintroduction of native animals to Sturt National Park, in NW NSW. Two reserve areas, totaling 40 sq kms, are now supporting populations of greater bilbies, crest-tailed mulgara and Shark Bay bandicoots, after they disappeared from the area over 100 years ago. […]
The February 2022 Rabbit-Free Newsletter is now available at the website’s Member’s Lounge. Guests are welcome. Everything from the Annual Report, Gene Drive technology, rabbit ecology and member profiles, to a story about a chef turned rabbit-controller. See Newsletters in the Member’s Lounge.
In a recent contribution to The Conversation, Associate Professor Katherine Moseby (UNSW) refers to rabbits, cats and foxes as an unholy trinity. Rabbits competed with native mammals for food and became food themselves for cats and foxes – inflating predator numbers and adding to the predation of native mammals. Katherine has over 25 years of […]
Herbivores are considered overabundant when they cause observable harm to a plant community. A framework for thinking about and recording overabundance is presented by John Morgan in a special issue of Ecological Management and Restoration. The focus of this work is on overabundant macropods (wallabies and kangaroos), but the concepts are equally relevant to understanding […]
Rabbits wrought untold damage to Australian landscapes, but rabbit bio-controls have been incredibly successful in triggering environmental recovery across massive areas of Australia.
Rabbits change entire ecosystems from the bottom up, and a couple of recent articles provide great examples of this, demonstrating how interconnected our environment is. It all starts with rabbits eating native vegetation; often very selectively taking out seedlings of the tastiest species. They are so good at this that they can completely prevent the […]