Rabbits and hares are the most widely spread herbivores in the Kosciuszko National Park, and are associated with less dense foliage, more bare ground and higher weed cover, according to a recent study published in Conservation Science and Practice. Rabbits were detected in 85% of study sites and over a wider range of elevations than […]
Grazing pressure – the combined consumption of plant matter by all herbivores. The population density of different species, their different feeding styles, and even different plant preferences – all those factors come together when trying to assess the ‘total grazing pressure’ on any area of land. Grazing pressure is often a key determinant of vegetation […]
Feral cats are more dependent on rabbits as prey than quolls are, and cats favour areas where rabbits are more common. Reducing rabbit numbers is a good bet if wanting to reduce feral cat numbers.
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.
Nearly 4,000 blood samples from rabbits across Australia help explain the spread of RHDV2
Biological controls have been the only effective measure to suppress European wild rabbits across Australia to date, providing opportunities for subsequent control through physical measures like ripping and baiting. However the virulence of bio-controls declines over time as the control agent and rabbits evolve, so a ‘pipeline’ of new control agents is necessary to avoid […]
Lowering rabbit numbers helps control cats, and is an essential part of wildlife recovery programs.
First there was myxomatosis, then RHDV, but what is next? Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) are funding CSIRO to search for the next potential rabbit bio-control for Australia, according to a recent announcement from the Centre for Invasive Species Solutions (CISS). The $7.7 million project aims to assess rabbit viruses from south America as potential […]
Invasive species are credited with reducing global GDP by 5% (see the article by Dropulich), but it is difficult to get a real handle on the losses they cause. Financial losses are one thing – it is even harder to measure and value environmental losses. As an example of the latter, a recent paper by […]