The Natural History of Sydney
Yuppie bandicoots of inner western Sydney - in hiding or urban renewal?
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Tanya Leary, Alan Kwok, Khan Ben, Paul Ibbetson, 2010. "Yuppie bandicoots of inner western Sydney - in hiding or urban renewal?", The Natural History of Sydney, Daniel Lunney, Pat Hutchings, Dieter Hochuli
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Long-nosed bandicoots Perameles nasuta were thought to have disappeared from inner western Sydney by the mid to late 1960s. This paper documents recent (2002-present) records of long-nosed bandicoots in the urban areas of inner western Sydney, including carcases (n=7), animals live-trapped or observed by us (n=7), and reports from the public (n=35). We also surveyed for bandicoot diggings in 88 urban parks and found 12 which contained possible diggings. Most of these records are concentrated in the suburbs of Dulwich Hill, Marrickville, Lewisham, and Petersham in an area of less than 1.9 km by 1.1 km (approximately 95 ha) in the local government area (LGA) of Marrickville, but when other scattered records are included, come from an 8.5 km x 6 km area in the LGAs of Ashfield, Canada Bay, Canterbury, and Leichhardt. A pilot radio-tracking study of two adult females found that they foraged almost exclusively in urban backyards and nested by day under old buildings. One female provided enough data for home range analysis, and had a home range of 2.7 ha (MCP) or 1.47 ha (KL95%); the core home range (KL50%) was only 0.16 ha. There were no signs that either individual avoided activity during peak hour traffic, although they often did not come out to forage for a whole night, or only foraged for a few hours within a night. We suggest that this might be a form of predator avoidance behaviour since feral and domestic cats were common in the area, and/or that they are able to obtain sufficient food in the short times they are active. We also speculate on the origins of these animals.