Rare, “virtually unstudied” marsupial spotted in the wheatbelt region of WA

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While it gave us no joy delivering some bad news RE: Hyde Park’s glorious trees yesterday, we’ll always try and balance out the bad with the good, and today’s environmental news is exactly that!

A marsupial called a Woolley’s False Antechinus has been caught on night cameras in the northern wheatbelt region of Western Australia.

The rarely-sighted marsupial (scientific name Pseudantechinus woolleyae) was spotted by volunteer ecologists from the Carbon Neutral Citizen Science Program, operating in the Yarra Yarra Biodiversity Corridor.

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Consultant ecologists Dr Nic Dunlop (pictured below with team) and Alison Goundrey were understandably quite excited upon capturing the critter in October 2023, with Dr Dunlop saying: “As far as we know this may be the first time it has been recorded in the wheatbelt…

“They were found at Karara prior to mining activity and it is thought to be present in the Mungada Ridge National Park some 6kms further inland from the Perenjori Hills.”

The marsupial was captured on camera in the Hughes Block area, which was recently listed as a Threatened Ecological Community (TEC) in Western Australia under the Biodiversity Conservation Act alongside 58 others.

Woolley’s False Antechinus is carnivorous, and found in small, isolated populations in the arid zone of the mid-west.

It’s thought to be a threatened species due to the destruction of its natural habitat from extensive iron ore mining in the region.

Image Credit: Supplied/Carbon Neutral