Retreating glaciers in the Antarctic and implications for penguins

January 24th, 2018

This time last year Graham and I were lucky enough to have spent about three weeks visiting the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula. The scenery is fantastic, and we saw thousands of breeding penguins, lots of seals, whales and sea birds. However, one of the most significant observations and lasting memories is […]

Welcome to 2018

January 11th, 2018

Between 2013-2016, Terrestrial Ecosystems posted a weekly blog, however, during 2017 we stopped the blog because we got too busy at work and thought it wasn’t being viewed. As it turns out lots of people read our blog and many people have asked why it stopped. Some of the previous blog topics included: Is the […]

Ownership of native fauna – could it make a difference

November 22nd, 2016

In the United Kingdom, as is the case elsewhere in the world, landholders/owners have some ownership rights over native fauna on their land. In short, there are three ways of qualified ownership of native fauna (ref ): Tame and reclaimed animals – Where a person lawfully takes, tames, or reclaims a living wild animal, they […]

Is the Ibis the next Rainbow Lorikeet or Cane Toad?

November 9th, 2016

The Rainbow Lorikeet (Trichoglossus haematodus) is regarded as either a pest of agriculture or an unwanted organism in New Zealand, Western Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia. On the east coast it inhabits rainforests, coastal bush and woodland areas. In Western Australia, the Rainbow Lorikeet is a declared […]

Terrestrial Ecosystems gets a wildlife conservation detection dog

October 26th, 2016

Wildlife or conservation detection dogs are now widely used in Australia and overseas to locate native and feral animals, their scats and retreats. They are also used to find particular plants and for locating drugs and explosives (Wasser et al. 2004, Smith et al. 2005, Arnett 2006, Long et al. 2007, Cablk et al. 2008, […]

Rainbow Bee-eaters return

October 10th, 2016

Early October heralds the return to the Perth area of one of Australia’s most colourful birds, the Rainbow Bee-eater (Merops ornatus). This bird, with its striking plumage of green, blue, orange and black, is a familiar site in the woodlands around Perth during the late spring and early summer as it undergoes its annual breeding […]

Assessing disturbance impacts using a bio-indicator

August 10th, 2016

After receiving multiple queries about the Rehabilitation and Degradation Index (RDI) discussed briefly in last weeks post I thought I would provide a bit more information. More frequently, state and commonwealth government environment ministers have required development proponents (i.e. land developers, mining companies etc) to monitor on-going potential impacts on the biodiversity in areas adjacent […]

Evaluating a potential disturbance

August 3rd, 2016

In many cases biological surveys to inform the evaluation process should be conducted on multiple occasions and comparison will be made between these data to ascertain trends and changes. However, data are only comparable when the same protocol has been used. Baseline data Most fauna impact evaluations compare aspects of the fauna assemblage or the abundance […]

Is the EPA consistent in its assessment

July 27th, 2016

At the recent Goldfields Environmental Management Group (GEMG) workshop, Andrew Mack, Associate Director with the Talis Consultants asked the question: is the EPA consistent in its assessment of large scale projects? This question should be viewed in concert with the recently released Independent Legal and Governance Review into Policies and Guidelines for Environmental Impact Assessments […]

Do we need a comprehensive public fauna survey database?

July 20th, 2016

In 2005, Prof. Philip Withers (UWA) and Dr Graham Thompson, via the Royal Society of Western Australia, received a $99,000 grant to develop a custom written software package for a vertebrate fauna survey database. The intent of this grant and LotteryWest (the grant provider) was that the data were to be made publicly available. In […]