of Rothschild’s Rock-wallaby in the Pilbara
Wildlife Research and Management was
commissioned by BHP Billiton Iron Ore to shift a population of rock-wallabies
occupying a small remnant of natural habitat contained within their mining
operation on Mount Whaleback. This
population was threatened by the ongoing expansion of the pit at Mount
Whaleback. The brief involved survey
of the rock-wallaby population on the mine site to establish the scale of
the move required, locating suitable habitat for translocation, liaising
with authorities, moving animals, and monitoring the outcome.
Fifty rock-wallabies were translocated
successfully to 15 sites within a 120 kilometre radius of Newman. Eleven animals were radio-collared to
assess survival and movement. While some animals appeared to move rapidly
away from their release location, others stayed within the immediate
area. Survival for up to 9 months (the
end of the monitoring period) was recorded.
Client: BHP Billiton Iron Ore.