Conserving Koala Country

Conserving Koala Country

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Eavesdropping on koalas

Thanks to the generosity of Wildlife Acoustics, we will soon be eavesdropping on koala conversations. Wildlife Acoustics has provided me with some Songmeters that I will be deploying in a number of sites in the Otways. Songmeters are recorders that can be programmed to record whenever you want them to. These ones will be programmed to remotely record for 5 minutes per hour for up to a month, and capture the 'song' of any koalas vocalising at the time.

Queensland researchers already have shown that systematic recordings can be used to determine the timing of the breeding season. Our project will build on that by examining if there is a relationship between the frequency of bellows in recordings and the density of koalas (from visual surveys) in a site. If we find that there is a relationship, using Songmeter recorders may be a less time-consuming and more systematic way of monitoring koala populations throughout Victoria.

Koala 'Dave' singing

Many thanks to Wildlife Acoustics for supporting our research!

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