A population of bridled nailtail wallabies in Queensland has been brought back from the brink of extinction after conservation scientists led by UNSW Sydney successfully trialled an intervention technique never before used on land-based mammals.
Using a method known as ‘headstarting’, the researchers rounded up bridled nailtail wallabies under a certain size and placed them within a protected area where they could live until adulthood without the threat of their main predators – feral cats – before being released back into the wild.
In an article published today in Current Biology, the scientists describe how they decided on the strategy to protect only the juvenile wallabies from feral cats in Avocet Nature Refuge, south of Emerald in central Queensland, where they numbered just 16 in 2015. MORE
Header image: Bridled nailtail wallabies stand a much better chance of survival once they have grown to a certain size. Credit: Alexandra Ross/UNSW.