Journal article

The current decline of tropical marsupials in Australia: is history repeating?

Diana O Fisher, Chris N Johnson, Michael J Lawes, Susanne A Fritz, Hamish McCallum, Simon P Blomberg, Jeremy VanDerWal, Brett Abbott, Anke Frank, Sarah Legge, Mike Letnic, Colette R Thomas, Alaric Fisher, Iain J Gordon, Alex Kutt

Global Ecology and Biogeography | WILEY | Published : 2014


Aim: A third of all modern (after 1500) mammal extinctions (24/77) are Australian species. These extinctions have been restricted to southern Australia, predominantly in species of 'critical weight range' (35-5500g) in drier climate zones. Introduced red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) that prey on species in this range are often blamed. A new wave of declines is now affecting a globally significant proportion of marsupial species (19 species) in the fox-free northern tropics. We aim to test plausible causes of recent declines in range and determine if mechanisms differ between current tropical declines and past declines, which were in southern (non-tropical) regions. Location: Australian continent Me..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by ARC

Funding Acknowledgements

The workshops that instigated the preparation of this manuscript were supported by the Australian Centre for Ecological Analysis, a facility of the Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network, which is funded by the Australian Government through the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy and the Super Science Initiative. We thank TERN staff and Linnaeus for funding, accommodation and practical help, especially Alison Specht. D.O.F., H.I.M., C.N.J. and M.L. were supported by ARC Fellowships and grants (DP0773920, FTll0100191, DP110103069 and FT110100057). A.K. and C.R.T. were supported by funding from the CSIRO Building Resilient Australian Biodiversity Assets Theme. A. Frank was supported by an ARC Linkage grant (LP100100033).