Sunday, February 27, 2011

Backyard Bandicoot!

For the last couple of months we have been planting and designing our garden. We where leaving it a bit late with summer coming on and we have been really lucky that this Spring and December has been very wet. For the 12 months Haico has been working very hard, removing the cement driveway and creating plant boxes, an putting on a deck. We planted out garden in the hope of attracting some native birds instead of the Mynas and Spotted-turtle Doves- respectively the worst feral bird and one considered to have the potential to become as bad. Rainbow Lorikeets have enjoyed the grafted gum, but the small insectivorous birds haven't moved in. One morning in the first week of January Haico woke me up, distressed because something had been attacking our garden.

NSW Environment speculates where they might have come from:
Long-nosed Bandicoots in inner western Sydney shelter mostly under older houses and buildings, and forage in parkland and back-yards (T. Leary pers. comm. August 2007; Australian Museum Business Services 2007; Leary et al. unpubl. data, ms submitted). The sub-adult and adult bandicoots presently living around the Dulwich Hill area may have dispersed from a source population occupying a larger area of remnant vegetation, such as Wolli Creek to the south. There are apparently no large blocks of suitable habitat, likely to support a large source population, on the Cooks River to the south, or along the southern foreshore of Parramatta River and Sydney Harbour to the north.

You can tell by the pointed cone shape of the scratching.

The Bandicoot stayed around for a few days and then went on his way- which is apparently their pattern. They like to hide under the house, forage for a few days then move on to the next old house with cracks in the foundations. It looks like the one that visited us lived under the new back deck.

They have arrived back though- not so much to our yard but to the nature strip out the front. National Parks have installed a motion-censor camera in our backyard to try and get some images. Fingers crossed it gets more than our legs going to the tap and compost bin.

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