As part of our activities to learn more about the Strathbogie forests, we’ve begun using motion-sensing cameras (aka trail cameras) to survey the animals of the forest floor. Two weeks prior to our Parlours Ck walk in March this year, we set-up six trail cameras along Parlours Creek and then collected them on the walk.
In all, the cameras recorded 21 species of fauna, 13 birds and eight mammals, along with quite a few unidentified critters:
Birds: Pied Currawong, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo, Gang Gang Cockatoo, Crimson Rosella, White-browed Scrub-wren, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, White-eared Honeyeater, Bassian Thrush, Grey Shrike-thrush, Brown Thornbill, Laughing Kookaburra, White-throated tree-creeper, Red Wattlebird.
Mammals: Swamp/Black Wallaby, Mountain Brushtail Possum, Common Ringtail Possum, Bush Rat, Agile Antechinus, Micro-bat species, Red Fox, Sambar Deer.
The original videos are quite sharp, but converting them to youtube has caused them to blur a little – each is about 8 seconds long.
This Mountain Brushtail Possum was filmed at Site 1. Most of the six cameras recorded this species and it is widespread in these forests. Mountain Brushtails, or Bobucks, spend quite a lot of time on the ground, here coming down for a drink, but they’re also very keen on fungi. In fact fungi make up a substantial part of the diet in the winter months.
Common Wombats are also widespread in the forest and were recorded at several of the trail cam sites.
Though it’s a bit hard to tell from this distance, the mouse-sized animal (below) is (most likely) an Agile Antechinus, a common inhabitant of the forest. These are small, carnivorous marsupials and very agile climbers, spending lots of time above-ground, foraging in trees.
Not surprisingly, deer were also caught on camera. This specimen is a Sambar Deer (below), as were all the deer recorded on camera.
An interesting find was this Bassian Thrush, an inhabitant of damp, shady forests that has disappeared from most areas of the Stratbogie Ranges, except for ecologically intact forests, such as in Parlours Block.
This site proved rich in fauna visits, including Yellow-tailed Black-cockatoos, Gang Gang Cockatoos and more.
This partially blind Swamp Wallaby (below) was caught on-camera a number of times, along with a Red Fox and Bush Rat.