Holsworth Conservation ecology of the Greater Bilby

  • Banks, Sam (Principal Investigator/Chief Investigator A)
  • Geyle, Hayley (Student Investigator)

Project: Research

Project Details

Description

The greater bilby (Macrotis lagotis) is an iconic threatened species of cultural significance to Aboriginal people of central Australia. Its range has contracted significantly since European colonisation, likely due to a combination of inappropriate fire regimes, predation and livestock grazing. However, the extent and interactive effects of these threats on bilbies are not well established. Furthermore, there is a remarkably limited understanding of bilby abundance,
which hinders our ability to make informed management decisions, or to monitor bilby responses to threats or management interventions.

The aim of my PhD is to improve the population trajectory of the bilby by addressing the following broad research areas:
(1) Identifying major environmental factors that influence current bilby distribution.
(2) Determining abundance: how many bilbies are there?
(3) Investigating metapopulation dynamics, connectivity and refuges.
(4) Assessing the impacts of fire on bilbies and their predators.

Funding from the Holsworth Wildlife Research Endowment in 2021/2022 would support the establishment of a fire experiment in the Tanami Desert (research area 4). This will involve implementing a before-after-impact-control (BACI) experiment across three sites, including monitoring the abundance and activity of bilbies and their predators before and after planned burns.
StatusActive
Effective start/end date1/09/2131/08/22