Wombats in road impacted environments

The persistence of common wombats in road impacted environments

There is growing global concern over the influence of road development on the conservation of biodiversity and on the functioning of ecosystems. Published reviews in the field of road ecology have identified that most research has examined the effects of roads linearly and have advocated for research at landscape scales. Among the many effects roads have, one of the most significant is the loss of animal life resulting from collisions with vehicles. Despite this, little is known of what toll this has on animal populations and how these impacts vary with scale. This stems from the perception that impacts are localised and that animals killed are typically considered common, and therefore not of great conservation concern. This thesis challenges this notion by showing that the impacts of fatalities can affect populations at landscape extents and that commonness is not a barrier to localised extinction risk. To achieve this I focus on the common wombat; an example of a common species for which road impacts have never been previously examined.

 
Media:

http://www.smh.com.au/environment/conservation/wombats-fall-victim-to-cars-in-reserves-20100717-10f5k.html

Research Program: 
Threatened Species
Research Themes: 
Conservation Practice
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