Habitat of the eastern barred bandicoot, Perameles gunnii, in Tasmania: an analysis of road-kills
Driessen, MM and Mallick, SA and Hocking, GJ, Habitat of the eastern barred bandicoot, Perameles gunnii, in Tasmania: an analysis of road-kills, Wildlife Research, 23 pp. 721-727. ISSN 1035-3712 (1996) [Refereed Article]
The habitat requirements of the eastern barred bandicoot, Perameles gunnii, in Tasmania were investigated with road-kill survey data and by mapping habitat features along survey routes. Road-kills of eastern barred bandicoots were most numerous in the South-east and North-west, less common in the North-east and Midlands, and very uncommon on the East Coast. Logistic regression of bandicoot presence/absence data suggested that traffic volume is the major determinant of the road-kill distribution of eastern barred bandicoots around Tasmania. Along with traffic volume, rainfall was found to be strongly associated with the presence of eastern barred bandicoot road-kills for the state combined and for the South-east and Northeast, while along the Huon Highway in the South-east, soil depth was associated with the presence of roadkills. Favoured habitat of the eastern barred bandicoot is high-quality agricultural land with deep soils and high rainfall. It is hypothesised that clearing for agriculture in south-eastern, north-eastern and north-western Tasmania has opened up previously unsuitable, heavily forested habitat for colonisation by eastern barred bandicoots. The resulting mosaic of pasture and remnant bush appears to provide ideal habitat for the eastern barred bandicoot. However, the majority of bandicoot habitat is found on private land, making the species vulnerable to changes in farming practices. Possible management options are briefly discussed.