Journal article

Diets of native and introduced mammalian herbivores in shrub-encroached grassy woodland, south-eastern Australia

Naomi E Davis, Graeme Coulson, David M Forsyth



Effective management of sympatric mammalian herbivore populations requires an understanding of interspecific interactions. At Wilsons Promontory National Park, Victoria, sympatric native and introduced mammalian herbivores are thought to be contributing to modification of shrub-encroached Coastal Grassy Woodland. We estimated the diets of the five terrestrial mammalian herbivore species present using microhistological techniques. The diets of introduced hog deer (Axis porcinus) and native swamp wallabies (Wallabia bicolor) consisted mainly of dicots. The diet of introduced European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) contained similar proportions of monocots and dicots. The diets of native easte..

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Funding Acknowledgements

This research was funded by Parks Victoria (Research Partners Program) and the Holsworth Wildlife Endowment. We thank the following Parks Victoria staff for their invaluable assistance: Matt Hoskins, Elaine Thomas, Mick Keenan, Jim Whelan, Dan Jones and the late Stuart Judd. Ron Mayze (Para Park Co-Operative Game Reserve) and the late Geoff Moore (Australian Deer Research Foundation) shared their deer expertise. Grant Norbury and Jac Cutter provided advice on dietary analysis and David Meagher identified mosses. We thank Mick Keough for statistical advice and we thank Andrea Taylor and two anonymous reviewers for comments on previous versions of this manuscript. Stomach sampling was conducted under Research permit 10002857, National Parks Act 1975 and Wildlife Act 1975 and plants were collected under Research Permit 10002450 of the Wildlife Act 1975, Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 and National Parks Act 1975.