The team at 4 Elements Consulting have recently completed a recent round of general fauna surveys to the arid landscapes a few hours west of Cairns. Armed with a diverse array of survey techniques, our team embarked on a mission to unveil the rich tapestry of species inhabiting this often overlooked region. In this post, we share the fascinating discoveries from our general fauna surveys and highlight a particularly thrilling find – a thriving population of Northern greater gliders.
Diverse Survey Techniques:
Our surveys employ a comprehensive suite of techniques designed to capture the essence of an ecosystem’s biodiversity. From camera trapping and cage trapping for large terrestrial mammals to elliot trapping for small mammals, pitfall traps, and funnel traps for reptiles, frogs, and rodents, our methods leave no stone unturned. Spotlighting for nocturnal birds and arboreal mammals, active searches for diurnal reptiles, and diurnal bird surveys complete the toolkit, ensuring a holistic understanding of the fauna present.
Our team’s diligent efforts uncovered a treasure trove of unique and uncommon species within the surveyed area. Notable among the findings were the striking Red-backed kingfisher and the migratory Oriental pratincole, adding to the region’s avian diversity. The discovery of cryptic reptiles such as the Black-striped snake and Curl snake, along with elusive rodents like the Central rock rat, underscored the importance of our thorough survey approach.
The Crown Jewel: Northern Greater Gliders:
The highlight of our expedition was the identification of a healthy population of Northern greater gliders within a previously unsurveyed patch of bushland. Designated as Vulnerable under the EPBC Act, the Northern greater glider faces significant threats from climate change, including drought, bushfires, and extreme temperatures. Recognising the urgency of the situation, we plan to return to the property in the coming months to conduct targeted surveys specifically for the Northern greater gliders. This will enable us to gain a nuanced understanding of their population dynamics, facilitating informed management decisions to safeguard this vulnerable species.
Climate Change and Conservation:
The vulnerability of the Northern greater glider to climate change emphasises the broader challenges facing wildlife in the region. At 4 Elements Consulting, we recognise the need for adaptive and proactive conservation strategies. By combining our expertise with cutting-edge survey techniques, we aim to contribute to the resilience of ecosystems and their inhabitants in the face of environmental challenges.