The control of
feral cats in semi-arid Australia
– the influence of secondary prey on cat dynamics
This project builds on recent research to control
feral cats at the Heirisson Prong reintroduction site at Shark Bay
(see pdf below). Most control
techniques for feral cats rely heavily on periods of food shortage to
facilitate uptake of baits. This study looks at the relative dynamics of rabbits
(as primary prey for feral cats) and reintroduced native mammal species in
response to rainfall to establish whether their dynamics track each other
(and lagged rainfall). If the
dynamics of these two groups are asynchronous this may require a substantial
re-think and re-evaluation of the possibility of reintroduction of native
mammals to open systems with feral cats (as opposed to islands or large
fenced areas where cats are eliminated before reintroductions take place).
Client: Useless Loop Community Biosphere Project Group, Inc.
funded via Lotterywest.