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RAISED $ - OUR GOAL $500,000

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Quokka (Setonix brachyurus)

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OUR CONSERVATION STATUS
  • National: Vulnerable 
  • State: Vulnerable (WA)
HOW MANY OF US ARE THERE?

Mainland population unknown

WHERE DO WE LIVE?

In the wild, the Quokka is restricted to a very small range in the South-West of Western Australia, with a number of small scattered populations. There is one large population on Rottnest Island and a smaller population on Bald Island near Albany, which are free of foxes and cats.

DID YOU KNOW?

The Quokka is a small wallaby with thick, coarse, grey-brown fur with lighter underparts. Its snout is naked and its ears are short. Its short tail can reach 31cm long and tapers towards the end. Males grow to 54cm long and weigh up to 4.2kg, whereas females grow to 50cm and weigh up to 3.5kg. Although looking rather like a very small kangaroo, it can climb small trees and shrubs.

OUR HABITAT

The Quokka is a habitat specialist, preferring young low vegetation stages that have been burned within the previous ten years. The Quokka has relatively high water requirements, hence, the species is often present in riparian and swamp habitat.

The main habitat for mainland populations of the Quokka is dense riparian vegetation that provides refuge from predation by owls, foxes and cats. 

FAMILY LIFE

Quokkas are sexually mature at 18 months of age and live for about 10 years. Quokkas breed throughout the year, the mainland Quokka is relatively fertile and is able to wean two offspring per year, producing up to 17 young over a lifetime. However, the level of success from pouch young to independence can be low and this may explain the apparent lack of population growth.

One day after the young is born, the female mates again and the embryo stays dormant in the female. If the young in the pouch dies within five months, the embryo resumes development and is born in 24—27 days. If the first young lives, the embryo degenerates. Under good conditions the second embryo can resume growth after the first young is successfully raised. The young leaves the pouch between 6—7 months, but will return if alarmed or cold.

THREATS TO OUR SURVIVAL
  • Habitat loss and fragmentation due to clearance of native vegetation
  • Habitat destruction caused by feral pigs
  • Predation from foxes and cats
  • Inappropriate and changed fire regimes

Quokkas love & need:

Melaleuca

Melaleucas are important food sources for insects, birds and mammals. They range in size from small shrubs of one metre high, to trees which can reach 35 metres. Many are known as paperbarks and have bark that can be peeled in thin sheets whilst about 20% of the genus have hard, rough bark and another 20% have fibrous bark. Every species in the genus is an evergreen and the leaves vary in size from minute and scale-like. READ MORE

Eucalyptus

The Eucalypts range extends from sub-alpine areas to wet coastal forests, temperate woodlands and the arid inland. In fact, the only major environment where eucalypts are absent is probably rainforest. READ MORE

Acacia

The small Acacia flowers have five very small petals, almost hidden by the long stamens, and are arranged in dense, globular or cylindrical clusters; they are yellow or cream-colored in most species, whitish in some, or even purple or red. Acacia flowers have more than ten stamens. READ MORE