Protection of Fauna

All native fauna species found in Wild Mountains Nature Reserve are protected.

Native fauna will not be fed.

Food and general waste will not be disposed of in the Wild Mountains Nature Reserve. The storage or containment of waste will be undertaken in a way such that wildlife will not have access to it.

Rare and threatened fauna species that have been found in the area, or are likely to use the area, are to be considered when planning any educational or land management activity. Impacts on these species will be avoided. Special projects may be undertaken from time to time on the recovery of these species. Wild Mountains actively participates in any recovery initiatives and regular surveys. Fauna surveys at Wild Mountains will not use tape recorded call-back techniques for territorial species as these may cause unacceptable stress.

Significant Fauna at Wild Mountains

Fauna species identified as having special significance under Nature Conservation Act 1992:

Coxen’s Fig Parrot (Cyclopsitta diophthalma coxeni) - Endangered and could be extinct

Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) - Regionally Vulnerable

Spotted-tailed Quoll (Dasyurus maculatus maculatus) - Vulnerable

Glossy Black Cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus lathami) - Vulnerable

Sooty Owl (Tyto tenebricosa) - Rare

Albert’s Lyrebird (Menura alberti) - Rare

Grey Goshawk (Accipiter novaehollandiae) - Rare

Loveridge’s Mountain Frog (Philoria loveridgei) - Rare

Fletcher’s Frog (Lechriodus fletcheri) - Rare

Stephen’s Banded Snake (Hoplocephalus stephensii) - Rare

Wild Mountains Options for Monitoring

Things to consider when implementing a monitoring plan:-

  • What do you intend to use the information collected for
  • Keep it simple
  • Use a standard technique
  • Does it need specialised skills
  • Where will you keep the information collected?
  • How will you use the information collected?
  • What will it cost in time and money to maintain?

Monitoring Suitable for Volunteers and Staff involvement:

Water Sampling: Using Water Watch or Healthy Waterways methodology 

Photo Sites: Permanent photo sites ( DPI&F Grasscheck design may be a useful standard) To record areas of interest e.g. vegetation change, the effects of fire and progress of regeneration sites.

Animal Calls: Recording frog and bat calls that can be sent to an expert of interpretation. (May need to borrow Anabat recording gear from QPWS)

Incidental records: Fauna and flora:- Use a standardised recording sheet (Nature Search template may be handy) Establish a spreadsheet on the Wild Mountains computer (if not already established)

Soil Plot: Establish  a network if areas suitable for soil plot observations. Plots can be activated at various times throughout the year

Weather observations: Rainfall and temperature recordings. Maintain at a permanent location in a book or on computer

Monitoring Suitable for Groups with Expertise

Bird Observations: Establish a regular (annual/seasonal) visit by a Bird Observers group or the Fassifern Field Naturalists.

Incidental records: Fauna and flora:- Use a standardised recording sheet (Nature Search template may be handy) Establish a spreadsheet on the Wild Mountains computer (if not already established)

Specialised Species or land form specific monitoring: University groups and individuals: Recording information specific to their area of interest.

Protocols for Frog Conservation

Native frog species found in high altitude rainforests of Eastern Australia are particularly susceptible to the introduced Chytrid Fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis), which has caused a number of extinctions in recent years. The fungus is a water-borne pathogen, and therefore activities involving streams and water need to be carefully considered. Protocols will need to be adopted for managing the rainforest portions of the covenant area and for any activities involving frogs.  Essentially, cleanliness and quarantine are the two key aspects of frog conservation. See Schedule 2 for the Chytrid Fungus Protocol.

Land management activities and educational activities will need to be assessed for risk of impacting on frog species.

Chytrid Fungus Protocol for Frog Conservation

Chytrid Fungus (pronounced “Ki-trid”) is an introduced menace thought to be responsible for recent extinctions of frog species in Eastern Australian mountain rainforests.  It is a real threat to the conservation of frogs and may yet prove catastrophic. Our native frogs have not been exposed to it before and therefore are very susceptible. The fungus is listed as a Key Threatening Process in NSW.

Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis is a species of fungus in the phylum Chytridiomycota (and thus all members are labeled “chytrids”) that likes cool and wet conditions, like those in high altitude mountain rainforests. It is prevalent above 400m and often more active in winter. The pathogen is water-bourne and more likely to affect stream-associated frogs.

This fungus causes a fatal disease in adult frogs called chytridiomycosis. It attacks keratin, a common protein found in nearly all animals, and humans have it in callouses on the skin. Adult frogs have keratin in areas exposed to wear, such as hands and feet and where legs rub against the body. Tadpoles have keratin on mouthparts and on hands and feet as they form.  The fungus establishes in both tadpoles and, fatally, in adult frogs and affects respiration through the skin as well as attacking the nervous system.

Frogs that have probably become extinct in recent times are – Southern Dayfrog (Taudactylus diurnus), and Southern Platypus Frog (Rheobatrachus silus).  It is thought that chytrid fungus may be the cause.

To prevent the fungus from spreading, sensible protocols need to be followed when either moving around in the mountains or when handling frogs or keeping tadpoles. The protocol assumes that not all frogs in an infected pond have the chytrid fungus, and the infective load of a water body may not be high enough to cause cross-contamination of individuals.

Protocols

A. Movement and Land Management: [for moving between creek systems]

  • Footwear must be cleaned and disinfected with a solution of benzalkonium chloride (Toilet Duck, Sanpic, New Clenz, Pine Clean), without letting any solution enter a water body. Changing footwear and bagging between sites might be a practical alternative.
  • Equipment must be cleaned and disinfected or used only once.
  • Vehicle wheels must be cleaned and disinfected between sites, if moving from an infected site into a fungus-free area.  Footwear must be cleaned before getting into a car.
  • Foreign Materials (especially water from a different area) must not be brought into the rainforest.
  • Clean Up Before & After to prevent spreading the fungus to other regions or even other countries.

B. Handling Frogs:

  • Disposable Gloves – one for each frog. Or hands cleaned and disinfected and dried (don’t allow disinfectant to touch frogs).
  • One bag – one frog and dispose.
  • One bag – one tadpole and dispose.
  • Don’t release frogs into the wild from another area.

References: 

NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service: Hygiene Protocol for the Control of Disease in Frogs, August 2001.

Notes on Conservation of Select Fauna Species at Wild Mountains.

Spotted-tailed Quoll

(Dasyurus maculatus maculatus)

The Spotted-tailed Quoll is a solitary marsupial carnivore that ranges widely over large territories of up to 1,000 Ha. Territories are known to overlap. It favours wet forests but also moves through woodland. Like a large cat with spots, it is very proficient in climbing trees. It uses tree hollows and caves for shelter and for den sites. It tends to be affected by competition from wild dogs. It is also quite partial to domestic chooks, and has been destroyed as vermin in the past.

photo

Glossy Black Cockatoo

(Calyptorhynchus lathami)

These birds eat Allocasuarina seeds and need to drink water every day. They tend to be creatures of habit and use the same feed trees and same drinking spots from year to year. They breed in winter every second year and usually produce one offspring. Large tree hollows are needed for breeding.

Favoured feed trees can be identified by the copious quantities of chewed seed cones that litter the ground around the tree. Allocasuarinas need to be 7 years old before they produce abundant seed, so fire exclusion is vital. However, they germinate in disturbed areas so the food resource tends to move around in the landscape as trees mature and die.

Sooty Owl

(Tyto tenebricosa)

A secretive bird of thick rainforest, the Sooty Owl depends on a healthy mammal fauna for survival. As a peak predator, it is naturally in low densities, and pairs aggressively hold large territories. Old growth forests are the key to its conservation. They nest in large hollows.

Albert’s Lyrebird

(Menura alberti)

A shy bird of mountain rainforests and the logo for Beaudesert Shire. It eats various insects and gastropods found in leaf litter and must forage over large areas. Males claim territories during winter and can be readily surveyed by their loud musical territory calls. A lack of disturbance from human activities, few pest animals and unfragmented habitat will ensure their survival.

Grey Goshawk

(Accipiter novaehollandiae)

Pairs hold large territories that usually include a mixture of rainforest and wet sclerophyll.  Nests are often used repeatedly, but may be abandoned if subject to disturbance. The Grey Goshawk preys on birds and small mammals, usually in dense forest. Species survival depends on a lack of disturbance and dense old growth forests.

Koala

(Phascolarctos cinereus)

A mammal related to the Wombat, it lives in dry eucalypt forests and specialises by relying solely on eucalyptus leaves. A number of eucalypt species are used as food. Koalas can usually defend themselves, with large claws and powerful arms. Wedge-tailed Eagles are known to take young Koalas as food, otherwise there are no other predators. Koalas are prone to being hit by cars as they cross our many roads, especially in urban areas. They tend to move around between trees on a daily basis, and may be attacked on the ground by large dogs in the urban landscape. Koalas in stressed habitats are also susceptible to a disease called Chlamydia which causes blindness and infertility. In rural areas with adequate tree density and few roads, Koalas ought to be safely conserved. They are naturally in low numbers with a density of one Koala per 3 hectares

Pest Animals

The landowner will keep the covenant area relatively free of animal pests including domesticated animals.  Priority pests would include wild dogs, cats, pigs, and stray cattle. Monitoring for pest animals will be conducted from time to time using various appropriate methods, such as sand plots and hair traps. High concentrations of pests will trigger removal events based on strategies which minimise impact on native fauna. Advice will be sought from Council at such times.

The Dingo (Canus lupus dingo) is considered a native species by the Nature Conservation Act 1992. A Nature Refuge is considered to be a “protected area” and therefore will include the Dingo as part of the natural values of the area.  Additionally, the Dingo is listed as a dangerous animal.

However, the Dingo is declared as a Pest (Class 2) under the Land Protection (Pest and Stock Route Management) Act 2002, administered by Department of Natural Resources and Water, and landowners are required to keep their land free of such pests. The declaration of a Nature Refuge over-rides this Act.

Therefore, the landowner will endeavour to conserve the Dingo at minimal levels whilst being mindful of their impact on neighbouring properties and the prevalence of cross-bred wild dogs which are not considered as native. The landowner will participate in multi-property programs to reduce wild dog populations but require that trapping be the preferred control method, as opposed to baiting with 1080.

Honey Bees

Honey Bees will not be permitted in the conservation area, as they can swarm from commercial or hobby hives.  Feral bee colonies are notorious for claiming tree hollows suitable for native fauna. They also collect prodigious amounts of nectar, a scarce resource used by native fauna. Any feral bee colonies will be removed or exterminated.

Pets

Pets will be constrained from having free access into the Wild Mountains Nature Reserve.

Release of Animals

Injured native animals in care may be released into the area using current codes of practice. These codes require a consideration of species density and habitat viability of the receiving area.

Wild Mountains Fauna List

MAMMALS

  1. Short-beaked echidna ( Tachyglossu  aculeatus )
  2. Long-nosed bandicoot  ( Perameles nasuta )
  3. Koala ( Phascolarctos cinereus )
  4. Common ringtail possum ( Pseudocheirus  peregrinus )
  5. Sugar glider ( Petaurus  breviceps )
  6. Mountain brushtail possum  ( Trichosurus  caninus )
  7. Red-necked pademelon  ( Thylogale  thetis )
  8. Whiptail wallaby  ( Macropus parryi )
  9. Red-necked  wallaby  ( Macropus  rufogriseus )
  10. Swamp  wallaby ( Wallabia  bicolor )
  11. Brown antechinus  ( Antechinus  stuartii  )
  12. Dusky antechinus  ( Antechinus swainsonii )
  13. Fawn –footed  melomys  ( Melomys  cervinipes )
  14. Bush rat  ( Rattus  fuscipes )
  15. Swamp  rat  ( Rattus  lutreolus )
  16. Dingo ( Canis  familiaris  dingo )
  17. Eastern horseshoe-bat  ( Rhinolophus  megaphyllus )
  18. White-striped  mastiff-bat ( Tadarida  australis )
  19. A mastiff-bat  (Mormopterus  sp. )
  20. Gould’s  long-eared bat  ( Nyctophilus  gouldi )
  21. Common  bent-wing  bat  ( Miniopterus  schreibersii )
  22. Little  bent-wing  bat  ( Miniopterus  australis )
  23. Gould’s wattled  bat  ( Chalinolobus  gouldii )
  24. Greater broad-nosed  bat  ( Scoteanax  rueppellii )
  25. Little cave eptesicus  ( Eptesicus  pumilis )
  26. Large forest eptesicus  ( Eptesicus  darlingtoni )

BIRDS

  1. Australian brush-turkey  ( Alectura  lathamii )
  2. Painted button-quail (Tunix varia)
  3. Brown Quail  ( Coturnix  australis )
  4. Rose-crowned fruit–dove  ( Ptilinopus regina )
  5. Purple-crowned fruit-dove  ( Ptilinopus superbus )
  6. Wompoo  pidgeon ( Ptilinopus  magnificus )
  7. Brown pidgeon  ( Macropygia  amboinensis )
  8. Emerald dove  ( Chalcophaps  indica )
  9. Topknot pigeon  ( Lopholaimus  antarcticus )
  10. White-headed  pigeon  ( Columba  leucomela )
  11. Wonga pigeon  ( Leucosarcia  melanoleuca )
  12. Common bronzewing  ( Phaps  chalcoptera )
  13. Yellow-tailed  black-cockatoo  ( Calyptorhynchus  funereus )
  14. Red-tailed  black-cockatoo  ( Calyptorhynchus  magnificus)
  15. Glossy black-cockatoo  ( Calyptorhynchus  lathami)
  16. Sulphur-crested  cockatoo  ( Cacatua  galerita )
  17. Rainbow  lorikeet ( Trichoglossus  haematodus )
  18. Scaly-breasted  lorikeet  ( Trichoglossus  chlorolepidotus )
  19. Little lorikeet  ( Glossopsitta  pusilla )
  20. Coxen’s fig-parrot, race coxeni  (Psittaculirostris diophthalma)
  21. Australian  king-parrot  ( Alisterus  scapularis )
  22. Crimson rosella  ( Platycercus  elegans )
  23. Eastern rosella ( Platycercus eximius )
  24. Pale-headed  rosella  (  Platycercus  adscitus )
  25. Brush  cuckoo  ( Cuculus  variolosus )
  26. Fan-tailed  cuckoo  ( Cuculus  pyrrhophanus )
  27. Chestnut-breasted cuckoo  ( Cuculus  castaneiventris )
  28. Horsfield’s  bronze-cuckoo  ( Chrysococcyx basalis)
  29. Little  bronze-cockoo ( Chrysococcyx malayanus )
  30. Shining-bronze cuckoo race plagosus  ( Chrysococcyx  lucidus )
  31. Channel-billed cuckoo ( Scythrops  novaehollandiae )
  32. Pheasant  coucal  ( Centropus  phasianinus )
  33. Southern  boobook  ( Ninox  novaeseelandiae )
  34. Tawny  frogmouth  ( Podargus  strigoides )
  35. Barn owl  ( Tyto alba )
  36. Sooty owl  ( Tyto tenebricosa )
  37. Grass owl  ( Tyto  longimembris 0
  38. Barking owl  ( Ninox connivens )
  39. Australian owlet-nightjar  ( Aegotheles  cristatus )
  40. White-throated  nightjar  ( Caprimulgus  mystacalis )
  41. Spine-tailed  swift  (Hirundapus  caudacutus )
  42. Laughing kookaburra  ( Dacelo  novaeguineae )
  43. Forest kingfisher (Halcyon macleayii )
  44. Sacred kingfisher (Halcyon sancta )
  45. Dollarbird ( Eurystomus  orientalis )
  46. Rainbow  bee-eater ( Merops  ornatus )
  47. Noisy pitta ( Pitta  versicolor )
  48. Albert’s  lyrebird  ( Menura  alberti )
  49. Cicadabird ( Coracina  tenuirostris )
  50. Russet-tailed thrush  ( Zoothera  heinei )
  51. Rose robin ( Petroica  rosea )
  52. Eastern yellow robin  (  Eopsaltria  australis  )
  53. Pale-yellow robin  (  Tregellasia  capito  )
  54. Golden whistler ( Pachycephala  pectoralis )
  55. Rufous whistler (Pachycephala  rufiventris )
  56. Grey shrike-thrush ( Colluricincla  harmonica )
  57. Little shrike-thrush (Colluricincla  megarhyncha )
  58. Scaly shrike-thrush ( Zoothera  dauma )
  59. Crested shrike-tit ( Falcunculus  frontatus )
  60. Black-faced monarch Flycatcher ( Monarcha  melanopsis )
  61. Spectacled monarch Flycathcher( Monarcha  trivirgatus )
  62. Leaden flycatcher ( Myiagra  rubecula )
  63. Satin flycatcher ( Myiagra   cyanoleuca )
  64. Rufous fantail ( Rhipidura  rufifrons )
  65. Grey fantail ( Rhipidura  fuliginosa )
  66. Willie wagtail (Rhipidura  leucophrys )
  67. Black-faced cuckoo-shrike  ( Coracina  lineata )
  68. Varied triller ( Lalagae  leucomela )
  69. Logrunner  ( Orthonyx  temminckii )
  70. Eastern whipbird  ( Psophodes  olivaceus )
  71. Variegated wren  ( Malurus  lamberti )
  72. Red-backed wren  ( Malurus  melanocephalus )
  73. Superb-blue wren  (Malurus  cyaneus )
  74. Large-billed scrubwren ( Sericornis  magnirostris )
  75. Yellow-throated scrubwren  ( Sericornis  citreogularis )
  76. White-browed Scrubwren  ( Sericornis  frontalis )
  77. Brown  gerygone  ( Gerygone  mouki )
  78. White-throated  gerygone ( Gerygone  olivacea )
  79. Brown thornbill ( Acanthiza  pusilla )
  80. Buff-rumped  thornbill  ( Acanthiza  reguloides )
  81. Yellow thornbill  ( Acanthiza  nana )
  82. Striated thornbill  ( Acanthiza  lineata )
  83. Varied  sittella  ( Daphoenositta  chrysoptera )
  84. White-throated  treecreeper  ( Cormobates  leucophaea )
  85. Noisy friarbird  ( Philomen  corniculatus )
  86. Bell  miner ( Manorina  melanophrys )
  87. Lewin’s honeyeater  ( Meliphaga  lewinii )
  88. Yellow-faced honeyeater  ( Lichenostomus  chrysops )
  89. White-naped honeyeater  ( Melithreptus  lunatus )
  90. Scarlet honeyeater  ( Myzomela  erythrocephala )
  91. Eastern spinebill  ( Acanthorhynchus  tenuirostris )
  92. Mistletoebird  ( Dicaeum  hirundinaceum )
  93. Silvereye  ( Zosterops  lateralis )
  94. Red-browed firetail  ( Emblema  temporalis )
  95. Double-barred finch  ( Poephila  bichenovii )
  96. Olive-backed oriole  ( Oriolus  sagittatus )
  97. Spangled drongo  ( Dicrurus  hottentottus )
  98. Satin bowerbird  ( Ptilonorhynchus  violaceus )
  99. Regent bowerbird  ( Sericulus  chrysocephalus )
  100. Green catbird  ( Ailuroedus  crassirostris )
  101. Paradise riflebird  ( Ptiloris  paradiseus )
  102. Australian magpie  ( Gymnorhina  tibicen )
  103. Pied currawong  ( Strepera  graculina  )
  104. Torresian crow  ( Corvus  orru )
  105. Figbird ( Sphecotheres  viridis )
  106. Brown falcon  ( Falco  berigora )
  107. Collared  sparrowhawk  ( Accipiter  cirrhocephalus )
  108. Grey goshawk  ( Accipiter  novaehollandiae )
  109. Pacific baza  ( Avecida  subcristata )
  110. Peregrine falcon  ( Falco  peregrinus )
  111. Wedge-tailed eagle  ( Aquila  audax )
  112. Whistling kite  ( Haliastur  sphenurus )
  113. Spotted pardalote  (Pardalotus  punctatus )
  114. Striated pardalote  ( Pardalotus  striatus )

    VAGRANTS
  115. Nankeen night heron  ( Nycticorax  caledonicus )
  116. White-faced heron  ( Ardea  novaehollandiae )
  117. White-breasted sea-eagle  (Haliaeetus  leucogaster )
  118. Comb-crested jacana  ( Irediparra  gallinacea )

REPTILES

  1. A leaf-tailed  gecko ( Saltuarius  swaini )
  2. Bearded dragon ( pogona  barbata )
  3. A skink ( Calyptotis  scutirostrum )
  4. A skink ( Coeranoscincus  reticulatus )
  5. Pink-tongued skink  ( Cyclodomorphus  gerrardii )
  6. Land mullet  ( Egernia  major )
  7. Eastern grass skink  ( Lampropholis  delicata )
  8. A skink  ( Ophioscincus  truncatus )
  9. Tryon’s skink  ( Eulamprus  murrayi )
  10. Challenger skink  ( Saproscincus  challengeri )
  11. A skink  ( Cautula  zia )
  12. Major skink  ( Egernia  frerei )
  13. A skink  ( Eulamprus  martini )
  14. Eastern water dragon  ( Physignathus  lesueurii )
  15. A skink  ( Saproscincus  rosei )
  16. Southern rainforest dragon  ( Gonocephalus  spinipes )
  17. Lace monitor  ( Varanus  varius )
  18. Carpet python  ( Morelia  spilota  )
  19. Golden-crowned snake  ( Cacophis  squamulosus )
  20. White-crowned snake  ( Cacophis  harriettae )
  21. Dwarf-crowned snake  ( Cacophis  krefftii )
  22. Red-bellied Black snake  ( Pseudechis  porphyriacus )
  23. Rough-scaled snake  ( Tropidechis  carinatus )
  24. Green Tree snake  ( Dendrelaphis punctulatus )
  25. Blind snake  ( Ramphotyphlops  sp. )
  26. Yellow-faced whip snake  ( Demansia  psammophis )
  27. Small-eyed nake  ( Cryptophis  nigrescens )
  28. Stephen’s banded snake  ( Hoplocephalus  stephensii )
  29. Eastern brown snake ( Pseudonaja  textilis )
  30. Brown tree snake ( Boiga  irregularis )

FROGS

  1. Loveridge’s mountain frog  ( Kyarranus  loveridgei )
  2. Fletcher’s frog ( Lechriodus  fletcheri )
  3. Ornate burrowing Frog  ( Limnodynastes  ornatus )
  4. Striped marsh frog ( Limnodynastes peronii )
  5. Scarlet-sided pobblebonk  ( Limnodynastes  terraereginae )
  6. Great  Barred river  frog  ( Mixophyes  fasciolatus )
  7. Red-backed pseudophryne  ( Pseudophryne  coriacea )
  8. Trilling toadlet ( Uperoleia  fusca )
  9. Common green tree frog  ( Litoria  caerulea )
  10. Red-eye  tree frog ( Litoria  chloris )
  11. Eastern dwarf tree  Frog  ( Litoria  fallax )
  12. Graceful tree frog ( Litoria  gracilenta )
  13. Broad-palmed rocket frog  ( Litoria  latopalmata )
  14. Stony creek frog ( Litoria  lesueuri )
  15. Emerald-spotted  tree  frog  ( Litoria  peronii )
  16. Whirring tree frog  ( Litoria  revelata )
  17. Purple tree frog  ( Litoria  rubella )
  18. Laughing tree  frog  ( Litoria  tyleri )
  19. Cane toad ( Bufo  marinus )