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BRUSH-TAIL ROCK-WALLABY

BRUSH-TAIL ROCK-WALLABY

Scientific name: Petrogale penicillata
Status: Endangered (NSW)

Description

A small and muscular macropod, the brush-tail rock-wallaby is known for its long and bushy tail, white cheek stripe and black stripe from its forehead to the back of its head.

Habitat & Distribution

The brush-tail rock-wallaby is found from South-eastern QLD, to Western Victoria, roughly following the line of the Great Dividing Range. Their range has significantly declined leaving remaining populations fragmented and vulnerable to further catastrophe. They inhabit rocky escarpments, outcrops and cliffs with a preference for complex structures with fissures, caves and ledges, often facing north.

Diet and Behaviour

Foraging areas may include forests, woodlands and pastures. The brush-tailed rock-wallaby has a mixed diet: grass is the main item, but flowers, forbs, leaves, fruit, bark and fungi are also eaten.

Threats

Threats to the brush-tail rock-wallaby are varied but include predation by foxes and wild dogs, competition with feral goats as well as pigs, degradation and fragmentation of habitat, fire regimes that reduce the abundance and diversity of ground forage, infestation by invasive weeds causing loss and degradation of foraging habitat, and the predation of young by cats.

The population of wild brush-tail rock-wallabies is in decline, with less than 20,000 expected to be left in the wild, and as little as under 10 in some fragmented populations.

How is Aussie Ark helping?

Aussie Ark is protecting the habitat of this unique wallaby on Aussie Ark sites, by removing or managing stock and feral herbivores, conserving native vegetation, managing fire and controlling feral predators. We are nearing completion of a 400Ha sanctuary that our brush-tail rock-wallabies will call home, protected from predation. While construction is moving ahead, we are building our insurance population in specialised facilities to ensure we have a robust and healthy population. We expect to have our first founding individual wallabies arrive to the Ark in late 2018, with their release into a wild Aussie Ark sanctuary occurring in early 2019. By 2021 we will have nearly over 35 brush-tail rock-wallabies, equaling 1 wallaby per 11 hectares of sanctuary wilderness. By 2021 we will have increased the captive brush-tail rock wallaby population by 263%! Help support this species’ return to the wild by donating today!