General News

24 May, 2024

Wallabies show improvement

ON advice from the Victorian Conservation Regulator and macropod specialists, Moyne Shire Council will cease providing supplementary water to wallabies on Griffiths Island.

By Staff Writer

The wallabies on Griffiths Island will no longer receive supplementary water
The wallabies on Griffiths Island will no longer receive supplementary water

Provision of supplementary water to the wallabies was implemented over summer following reports of several wallabies presenting in poor health in February during drier conditions.

Director of Environment Economy and Place Jodie McNamara said consultation with the conservation regulator and macropod specialists suggested the wallaby population had reached a density greater than the resources available on the island, resulting in the observed population crash.

“It’s important to recognise that this is a natural ecological process that can occur, and populations can “boom” and “bust” based on resource availability,” Ms McNamara said.

“Department of Environment, Energy and Climate Action veterinarians conducted follow-up wellbeing checks last month and concluded the welfare concern is diminishing as environmental conditions change.

“Wallabies were observed to be active and alert, with several females seen carrying young in their pouches.”

Macropods attain their water from their surrounding environment and consumption in their diets, with intervention only performed in extreme circumstances.

Ms McNamara discouraged the public from interacting with wildlife (watering/feeding).

“This can result in behavioural change, dependency on human intervention, attract other invasive species like foxes and ravens and increase the risk of zoonosis transmission,” she said.

“An increase in raven activity on the island (near watering facilities) has also been reported by a local volunteer group and is considered to have contributed to several shearwater fatalities this season.”

Council is continuing to investigate long-term monitoring and management of the wallaby population.


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