Articles on Feral animals

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Wild horses, known as brumbies, in Australia. Shutterstock.com

Friday essay: the cultural meanings of wild horses

From 30,000-year-old cave paintings to The Man From Snowy River, wild horses have always been part of human culture. As Australia debates what to do with 'brumbies' in mountain environments, it's time to reconsider their place.
Part of Mandy Martin’s painting Cool Burn (2016): in her painting workshops at Djinkarr, Indigenous rangers brought the threats to their land to life on canvas.

Friday essay: caring for country and telling its stories

Feral cats and pigs, mission grass and climate change - in western Arnhem Land, Indigenous rangers are battling many environmental threats. Through painting and performance, they are also telling 'healthy country' stories.
There’s nothing feral about this Australian wildcat. Photograph by Angus Emmott

Let’s give feral cats their citizenship

There's been a lot of talk about killing feral cats, with the government's recently announced war on cats, with a goal to kill two million by 2020. But let's embrace cats as part of Australia's environment.
Cane toads are still spreading across northern Australia. UNSW

Building fences could stop cane toads in their tracks

Cane toads, introduced in 1935 to control cane beetles, have now spread across a huge swathe of Australia, from the Kimberley in northern Western Australia to northern New South Wales. They’re still spreading…
Feral cats eat tens of millions of native animals in Australia every night. Another Eye

Feral feast: cats kill hundreds of Australian animals

Feral cats are estimated to eat tens of millions of native animals each night in Australia. But what kinds of wildlife are they eating? In research published today in the Journal of Biogeography, my colleagues…
Who gets to survive when fire ravages the food and cover of native animals? Flickr/Alastair Smith

Predators get the advantage when bushfires destroy vegetation

Bushfires are a part of life in Australia, and when they have run their course we pick up where we left off and carry on. But if you happen to be a small animal, surviving the bushfire is only the start…
Rabbit numbers have been considerably reduced by the introduction of two viruses - Rabbit calicivirus and myxoma. CSIRO

Explainer: how ‘biocontrol’ fights invasive species

Australia’s “ferals” — invasive alien plants, pests and diseases — are the largest bioeconomic threats to Australian agriculture. They also harm our natural ecosystems and biodiversity. Some, such as mosquitoes…
A glimpse of wild brumbies in the Snowy Mountains. Michael Tristram/Flickr

The grim story of the Snowy Mountains’ cannibal horses

When you think of horses in the Australia high country, you might imagine noble brumbies galloping out from snowgums across grassy peaks, tails and manes trailing like streamers. But on a recent trip to…
A greater stick-nest rat ready to be released - with radio collar attached. Arid Recovery

From the frontline: saving Australia’s threatened mammals

Almost a third of Australia’s mammals have become extinct or are facing extinction, largely thanks to introduced predators such as cats and foxes. But what is the best way to save the species still alive…

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