Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

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Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Overlandman » Mon 18 Nov, 2013 7:16 pm

From ABC News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-18/m ... ection=tas


Mange is affecting half the wombat population in Narawntapu National Park

An infestation of mange is affecting around half of the wombats at a national park in the state's north.
Mange is caused by mites that burrow under the wombat's skin, irritating the animal and causing its fur to fall out.
Researchers from the University of Tasmania are looking in to the problem at Narawntapu National Park.
Disease ecologist Scott Carver says mange has always been in the park but seems to be more prevalent now.
He says the disease seems more common in flat areas of the park.
"About 50 per cent of the wombats at the moment in the park have some signs of mange," he said.
"We're still trying to understand it, but we think it's probably something to do with the environment and the moisture in the environment and how the mite survives.
"It could also be something to do with the health status of the wombat, like whether their immune system can fight off the infestation with the mite."

Park rangers are euthanasing dying animals.

Ranger Anthony Timmerman says the sight of sick wombats is upsetting for the public.
"The park is renowned for visitors coming to view wombats," he said.
The researchers hope their work will provide a better understanding of how to manage the infestation.
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Overlandman » Sun 15 Jul, 2018 1:46 pm

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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Nuts » Sun 15 Jul, 2018 3:03 pm

Poor buggers. It's good news, find it hard to get excited by an intervention at this level.
"The guides are all complaining there's mobile reception and hot showers," Godfrey laughs.
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Neo » Sun 15 Jul, 2018 7:52 pm

Really bad mange at Bendeela Flat, Kangaroo Valley
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby north-north-west » Tue 17 Jul, 2018 9:01 am

This is hardly new. Last time I was there - early spring last year - there was nary a wombat too be seen. I suspect it's affected considerably more than half the population.
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Nuts » Tue 17 Jul, 2018 11:18 am

Wombat distributions have been surveyed for a long time, are generally up, but not at Narawntapu.
There numbers have decreased 94% since 2006. 'Everywhere' to 'hardly any'. The real concern of course (assuming your not a Narawntapu Wombat), with no hope of eradication and no firm reason/treatment of the local cause, would be such a devastating spread elsewhere.
"The guides are all complaining there's mobile reception and hot showers," Godfrey laughs.
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Mr Bean » Tue 17 Jul, 2018 8:21 pm

I'm not aware of many surveys being done on wombat populations. I'd like to see them as its difficult to find some of the data. Narawntapu on the other hand has had surveys done on a regular basis, and the numbers have plummeted. When I was there in 2015 to assist and provide info on a treatment program, there were about 50-60. Six months ago, they were down to 10-12.

The biggest killers of wombats is mange and roadkill, followed by people shooting them and dog attack (DELWP in Victoria don't help, with ATCW being issued and the numbers of wombats "legally" allowed to be shot going from 1900 to 3400 in 10 years). Considering the lifespan of a Bare nosed wombat is about 15-18 years, that they start to breed at 4-5yo and only have 1 young every 3 years or so, they might have 5-6 young in a lifetime. Out of that, they may loose 2-3 from the issues mentioned. It doesn't leave a great replacement number.

The lifecycle of the mange mite, on host, is around 4-5 weeks, with off host mites living for 1-2 weeks (in the burrow). Treatment with Cydectin for 4-6 weeks tends to kill the mite on and off the host. You end up with a mange free animal and burrow. The problem with Cydectin is that it lasts 2 weeks or so and needs to be repeated every 1-2 weeks for the 6 week timeframe. What Scott is working on is a chemical that will last longer than the lifecycle of the mite. Now that is a real game changer.
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Nuts » Tue 17 Jul, 2018 9:52 pm

Thanks Mr Bean.

Wombat Population Trends in Tasmania.pdf
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby north-north-west » Wed 18 Jul, 2018 10:57 am

Mr Bean wrote:DELWP in Victoria don't help, with ATCW being issued and the numbers of wombats "legally" allowed to be shot going from 1900 to 3400 in 10 years


It's legal to shoot wombats in Victoria? Is this farmers supposedly protecting croplands, or as a food source? I didn't think wombat was tasty enough to be worth the trouble.
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Re: Narawntapu Wombats in Trouble

Postby Mr Bean » Wed 25 Jul, 2018 12:10 pm

north-north-west wrote:It's legal to shoot wombats in Victoria? Is this farmers supposedly protecting croplands, or as a food source? I didn't think wombat was tasty enough to be worth the trouble.


Its a grey area. While all native wildlife is protected, there are exceptions and permits. In Victoria you apply for an ATCW (Authority To Control Wildlife) which can be carried out as lethal or non-lethal. The majority of the time, its lethal and un-regulated.

This is the list of wildlife in Victoria where permits have been given....
https://www.wildlife.vic.gov.au/__data/ ... 9-2017.pdf
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