Since colonisation, arid and semi-arid areas of Australia have suffered the highest rate of mammal extinction in the world resulting in an ecological imbalance of disastrous proportions. Without the animals that were once a critical part of a properly functioning arid zone ecology the entire system has broken down and the capacity of the land and remaining species to survive during hard times has drastically reduced.
The Western Quoll, a small Australian native carnivorous top order predator once thrived across 80% of the Australian continent. Until the start of the re-introduction project, the western quoll population could only be found in the south-west of Western Australia, and had been extinct from the Flinders since the 1880s.
The re-establishment of the Western Quoll in the Flinders Ranges, in a non-fenced environment will reduce the impact of foxes, cats, rabbits and mice. It will also provide cascading benefits for South Australian wildlife and natural environments without the need for trapping, poisoning, or other resource intensive methods as well as the great cultural significance for the Adnyamathanha people, for whom the quoll is a totem animal and an integral part of their Dreaming.
The Western Quoll restoration project is the first public/private partnership between a non-profit organisation and the SA Government (Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources [DEWNR]), which will provide a template for further restorations in other areas.