Rare chuditch sighting in Albany area

Media Statement from Hon Albert Jacob BEnvDes M.Arch JP MLA

  • Chuditch spotted in Albany for the first time in 15 years
  • Chuditch numbers have increased due to fox control programs

A rare marsupial not seen in the Albany region for more than 15 years has been sighted by a Department of Parks and Wildlife officer at Two Peoples Bay.

Making the announcement while in Albany today, Environment Minister Albert Jacob said the chuditch was spotted and later photographed by ranger Mark True.

“Mr True saw the chuditch, or western quoll, crossing the road in front of his vehicle at Two Peoples Bay Nature Reserve last month.  He was later able to photograph the animal in a tree on the edge of the reserve,” Mr Jacob said.

“This is an exciting discovery because the animal has not been seen in the Albany area for 15 years, with the last local sighting in the Redmond area north of Albany in 1999.

“The chuditch, which is about the size of a small cat, is Western Australia’s largest carnivorous marsupial. This species used to be found over most of Australia, but is now restricted to parts of the south-west corner of WA and is classed as vulnerable.

“The good news is that chuditch numbers have increased in recent times, particularly in South-West forests, in response to the State Government’s successful Western Shield fox control program.

“An experimental cat control program in Fitzgerald River National Park on the south coast is also having a positive effect on introduced predators, with good numbers of chuditch observed during recent surveys.”

The Minister urged members of the public to contact the Department of Parks and Wildlife with reports or images of chuditch seen in the region.

“The chuditch is easily recognisable with its white-spotted fur.  It is usually nocturnal and climbs trees to hunt and to escape from predators,” he said.

Fact File   

  • The chuditch’s diet consists of invertebrates, small birds, lizards and some plant material
  • Chuditch sightings in the Albany region can be reported to the Department of Parks and Wildlife’s Albany office on 9842 4500

Mark True’s picture of the chuditch he spotted is below

chuditch

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