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The common brushtail possum Trichosurus vulpecula poses a test for managers of urban wildlife because community attitudes towards the species vary widely from those who are prepared to live with it to those who wish it to be controlled as a pest. The New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service has the responsibility for protecting possums throughout the state. This raises three issues for review: 1. what is the conservation status of brushtail possums in both urban and non-urban areas of New South Wales?; 2. what is the extent, location and nature of the problem in Sydney?; and 3. how appropriate is current NPWS policy and management practice? The solution to the conundrum will require improvements to management strategies, further research and sustained education programs.

Aldred, J. 1979. Field experiments on population regulation in the brush-tailed possum, Trichosurus vulpecula (Kerr). Hons Thesis, University of Sydney.
Augee, M. L., Smith, B. and Rose, S. 1996. Survival of wild and hand-reared ringtail possums ( Pseudocheirus peregrinus) in bushland near Sydney. Wildlife Research 23: 99-108.
Bird, P. L. 1997. A review of the ecology of the common brushtail possum Trichosurus vulpecula in south-eastern Australia. Pp. 4-10 in The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia, edited by J. B. Paton, P. J. Alexander, P. L. Bird, F. Dal Piva, R. W. Inns, D. K. Kelly and R. F. Storr. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Birks, E. N. 1921 Brief History of Wilcox Mofflin Ltd and Present Day Organization. Radcliffe Press, Sydney.
Coombe, G. N. 1996. Problems caused by common brushtail possums and management options. Pp. 32-4 in The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia, edited by J. B. Paton, P. J. Alexander, P. L. Bird, F. Dal Piva, R. W. Inns, D. K. Kelly and R. F. Storr. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Davies, R. G., Webber, L. M. and Barnes, S. G. 2004. Urban wildlife management - it's as much about people. Pp. 38-43 in Urban Wildlife: more than meets the eye, edited by D. Lunney and S. Burgin. Royal Zological Society of NSW, Mosmon NSW.
Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Victoria. 1997 Living with Possums. Available at www.nre.vic.gov.au/animals/possums/index.htm.
Gresser, S. 1996. Anti-predator behaviour of the common brushtail possum ( Trichosurus vulpecula) at Burrendong Dam, New South Wales. Hons Thesis, University of Sydney.
Hill, B. M. 1997. The ecology and management of the common brushtail possum in metropolitan Adelaide. Pp. 11-4 in The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia, edited by J. B. Paton, P. J. Alexander, P. L. Bird, F. Dal Piva, R. W. Inns, D. K. Kelly and R. F. Storr. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Hill, B. in prep. The ecology and management of the common brush-tailed possum in the Adelaide metropolitan region. Draft MSc Thesis, University of Adelaide.
Kerle, J. A. 2001 Possums: the Brushtails, Ringtails and Greater Glider. UNSW Press, Sydney.
Littin, K. 1999. Research on humane pest control and new ideas about suffering. Pp. 108-12 in The Use of Wildlife for Research, edited by D. Mellor and V. Monamy. ANZCCART, Glen Osmond.
Lucas, A. H. S. and Le Souëf, W. H. D. 1909 The Animals of Australia. Mammals, Reptiles and Amphibians. Whitcombe and Tombs Limited, Melbourne.
Lunney, D., Curtin, A. L., Ayers, D., Cogger, H. G., Dickman, C. R., Maitz, W., Law, B. and Fisher, D. 2000. The threatened and non-threatened native vertebrate fauna of New South Wales: status and ecological attributes. Pp. 1-132. Environmental and Heritage Monograph Series No. 4. NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, Hurstville.
Miller, K. K., Brown, P. R. and Temby, I. 1999. Attitudes towards possums: a need for education? The Victorian Naturalist 116: 120-7.
Montague, T. L. (ed.) 2000 The Brushtail Possum. Biology, Impact and Management of an Introduced Marsupial. Manaaki Whenua Press, Lincoln, New Zealand.
Montague, T. and Warburton, B. 2000. Non-toxic techniques for possum control. Pp. 164-74 in The Brushtail Possum. Biology, Impact and Management of an Introduced Marsupial, edited by T. L. Montague. Manaaki Whenua Press, Lincoln, New Zealand.
Paton, J. B., Alexander, P. J., Bird, P. L., Dal Piva, F., Inns, R. W., Kelly, D. K. and Storr, R. F. (eds) 1996 The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Pietsch, R. S. 1994. The fate of urban common brushtail possums translocated to sclerophyll forest. Pp. 239-46 in Reintroduction Biology of Australian and New Zealand Fauna, edited by M. Serena. Surrey Beatty and Sons, Chipping Norton.
Poland, H. 1892 Fur-bearing Animals in Nature and Commerce. Gwney and Jackson, London.
Shaw, J. 1979. The introduction of captive hand-reared ringtail possums ( Pseudocheirus peregrinus) into Coranderrk Reserve, Healesville. Australian Mammal Society Bulletin 5(2): 27-8.
Statham, M. and Statham, H. L. 1997. Movements and habits of brushtail possums ( Trichosurus vulpecula Kerr) in an urban area. Wildlife Research 24: 715-26.
Temby, I. Undated. Urban possum management in Victoria - a case study. Report to the Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Victoria.
Van Dyck, S. 1994. Brushtail business. Australian Natural History 24(8): 16-7.
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References

Aldred, J. 1979. Field experiments on population regulation in the brush-tailed possum, Trichosurus vulpecula (Kerr). Hons Thesis, University of Sydney.
Augee, M. L., Smith, B. and Rose, S. 1996. Survival of wild and hand-reared ringtail possums ( Pseudocheirus peregrinus) in bushland near Sydney. Wildlife Research 23: 99-108.
Bird, P. L. 1997. A review of the ecology of the common brushtail possum Trichosurus vulpecula in south-eastern Australia. Pp. 4-10 in The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia, edited by J. B. Paton, P. J. Alexander, P. L. Bird, F. Dal Piva, R. W. Inns, D. K. Kelly and R. F. Storr. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Birks, E. N. 1921 Brief History of Wilcox Mofflin Ltd and Present Day Organization. Radcliffe Press, Sydney.
Coombe, G. N. 1996. Problems caused by common brushtail possums and management options. Pp. 32-4 in The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia, edited by J. B. Paton, P. J. Alexander, P. L. Bird, F. Dal Piva, R. W. Inns, D. K. Kelly and R. F. Storr. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Davies, R. G., Webber, L. M. and Barnes, S. G. 2004. Urban wildlife management - it's as much about people. Pp. 38-43 in Urban Wildlife: more than meets the eye, edited by D. Lunney and S. Burgin. Royal Zological Society of NSW, Mosmon NSW.
Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Victoria. 1997 Living with Possums. Available at www.nre.vic.gov.au/animals/possums/index.htm.
Gresser, S. 1996. Anti-predator behaviour of the common brushtail possum ( Trichosurus vulpecula) at Burrendong Dam, New South Wales. Hons Thesis, University of Sydney.
Hill, B. M. 1997. The ecology and management of the common brushtail possum in metropolitan Adelaide. Pp. 11-4 in The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia, edited by J. B. Paton, P. J. Alexander, P. L. Bird, F. Dal Piva, R. W. Inns, D. K. Kelly and R. F. Storr. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Hill, B. in prep. The ecology and management of the common brush-tailed possum in the Adelaide metropolitan region. Draft MSc Thesis, University of Adelaide.
Kerle, J. A. 2001 Possums: the Brushtails, Ringtails and Greater Glider. UNSW Press, Sydney.
Littin, K. 1999. Research on humane pest control and new ideas about suffering. Pp. 108-12 in The Use of Wildlife for Research, edited by D. Mellor and V. Monamy. ANZCCART, Glen Osmond.
Lucas, A. H. S. and Le Souëf, W. H. D. 1909 The Animals of Australia. Mammals, Reptiles and Amphibians. Whitcombe and Tombs Limited, Melbourne.
Lunney, D., Curtin, A. L., Ayers, D., Cogger, H. G., Dickman, C. R., Maitz, W., Law, B. and Fisher, D. 2000. The threatened and non-threatened native vertebrate fauna of New South Wales: status and ecological attributes. Pp. 1-132. Environmental and Heritage Monograph Series No. 4. NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, Hurstville.
Miller, K. K., Brown, P. R. and Temby, I. 1999. Attitudes towards possums: a need for education? The Victorian Naturalist 116: 120-7.
Montague, T. L. (ed.) 2000 The Brushtail Possum. Biology, Impact and Management of an Introduced Marsupial. Manaaki Whenua Press, Lincoln, New Zealand.
Montague, T. and Warburton, B. 2000. Non-toxic techniques for possum control. Pp. 164-74 in The Brushtail Possum. Biology, Impact and Management of an Introduced Marsupial, edited by T. L. Montague. Manaaki Whenua Press, Lincoln, New Zealand.
Paton, J. B., Alexander, P. J., Bird, P. L., Dal Piva, F., Inns, R. W., Kelly, D. K. and Storr, R. F. (eds) 1996 The Common Brushtail Possum in South Australia. Fauna Management Coordinating Committee, Departments of Primary Industries and Environment and Natural Resources, Adelaide.
Pietsch, R. S. 1994. The fate of urban common brushtail possums translocated to sclerophyll forest. Pp. 239-46 in Reintroduction Biology of Australian and New Zealand Fauna, edited by M. Serena. Surrey Beatty and Sons, Chipping Norton.
Poland, H. 1892 Fur-bearing Animals in Nature and Commerce. Gwney and Jackson, London.
Shaw, J. 1979. The introduction of captive hand-reared ringtail possums ( Pseudocheirus peregrinus) into Coranderrk Reserve, Healesville. Australian Mammal Society Bulletin 5(2): 27-8.
Statham, M. and Statham, H. L. 1997. Movements and habits of brushtail possums ( Trichosurus vulpecula Kerr) in an urban area. Wildlife Research 24: 715-26.
Temby, I. Undated. Urban possum management in Victoria - a case study. Report to the Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Victoria.
Van Dyck, S. 1994. Brushtail business. Australian Natural History 24(8): 16-7.
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