Urgent action to save the KI Dunnart from extinction Kangaroo Island, South Australia
Headway was being made before the December fires decimated much of the known remnant patches where the Dunnarts dwelled. Since the Bushfires Dunnarts have been found on camera in remnant patches in the fire scar not burnt.
We are working closely with our on-ground partners Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife (Pat Hodgens and Heidi Groffen) on Kangaroo Island in response to the bushfire crisis. This is a long-term problem in urgent need of addressing.
This project funding
URGENT ACTION TAKEN SINCE THE BUSHFIRES:
To date, FAME have deployed from this fund financial assistance for:
- Provided continued financial support to on-ground partners Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife (Pat Hodgens and Heidi Groffen) to allow them to focus on the on-ground work required.
- Funding of a helicopter to view the fire scar and locate remnant patches of KI Dunnart known habitat.
- Deployment of a drone to identify feral predators and possible dunnarts.
- Coordinated feral management with the assistance of Sporting Shooters South Australia in the area known to have surviving Dunnarts.
- Long term revegetation of affected areas.
In the meantime Australian Wildlife Conservancy, along with the Australian Army have mobilised materials and personnel to immediately construct a fence around a small patch of remaining unburnt Dunnart refugia with long term goal of building a fenced sanctuary on local land holders (Jamie, Lib and Andy Doube).
Also thank you to WWF and ZooSA for their assistance post bushfire.
Following this FAME’s future role is to fund continued feral management, replace vital survey and thermal equipment, vehicle hire, ensure funding for vital revegetation in key Dunnart territorial ares (some of the area has scrub which will organically revegetate) and on-ground costs.
In addition, pre bushfires, 10 properties across Kangaroo Island were known to be Dunnart sites identified by KILFW. Since the fires, in addition to the sanctuary area two more sites with dunnarts have been detected. These are all placed within the unburnt areas in the fire scar of the Island.
In partnership with KILFW, we look to assist in funding the revegetation of these 10 areas (outside of the sanctuary) equating to 8000ha to provide sanctuary to this precious species.
Kangaroo Island Dunnart is endemic to Kangaroo Island, South Australia. With approx 300 individuals remaining they are one of Australia’s most endangered species.The Kangaroo Island Dunnart is a small a dark sooty-grey coloured dunnart species that is found only on Kangaroo Island. They are nocturnal and their diet consists of invertebrates, mainly ants and spiders, however scorpions, beetles, and grasshoppers are also eaten.
This is a continuation of many years of work.To read the OKR’s (objectives and key results) visit Finding the elusive endangered Kangaroo Island Dunnart
This project will help save the Kangaroo Island Dunnart from extinction by controlling feral cats, establishing a refuge behind predator-proof fencing and surveying and monitoring of the populations.
This project will make a very significant contribution to preventing the extinction of the Kangaroo Island Dunnart.
Urgency and Action:
It is grim - opposite are photos taken of the fire scar from the helicopter, funded by our Bushfire Fund, where our project partners Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife were able to view from the air and locate as many remnant patches across western Kangaroo Island in the hope of finding areas where critically endangered dunnarts and other key species could be residing.
Scientists have given the Kangaroo Island Dunnart a 22% chance of becoming extinct in the next 20 years unless action is taken to address threats. Implementation of this project may be the difference in the survival or extinction of the Kangaroo Island Dunnart.
Key actions for FAME include, but not limited to;
- fund continued feral management,
- replace vital survey and thermal equipment,
- assist with funding for vehicle hire,
- ensure funding for vital revegetation in key Dunnart territorial ares (some of the area has scrub which will organically revegetate), and
- other on-ground costs associated with the project.
The Kangaroo Island Dunnart is threatened with extinction from bushfires and feral predators.
The nonprofit organisation Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife Association Incorporated will implement this project. They have a vison that by 2021, in partnership with private Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife landholders, they will manage 50,000 hectares of private lands for Kangaroo Island Dunnart conservation, with a longer-term vision to down grade the Kangaroo Island Dunnart EPBC Act and South Australian State listing from Endangered to Vulnerable by 2029.
This project follow an earlier collaboration between FAME and Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife Association Incorporated on the successful Finding the Kangaroo Island Dunnart project.
Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife Association Incorporated will involve Natural Resources Kangaroo Island, Kangaroo Island Community Education, Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife Program and the South Australian Sporting Shooters Association in supporting the outcomes of this project. The South Australian Sporting Shooters Association to undertake regular feral cat control across private properties.
- 24 JUNE 2019; We need your help to save the Kangaroo Island Dunnart from extinction. Read more: Project release
- 6 JANUARY 2020; The devastating impact of fires on Kangaroo Island. Read more: Project update
- 12 JANUARY 2020; Bushfire Appeal Expenditure: Kangaroo Island Dunnart. Read more: Project update
- 18 JANUARY 2020; A little light in a somewhat grim landscape. Read more: Project update
Images supplied by Jody Gates at the South Australian Department of Environment, Water, and Natural Resources.