Age-Specific Fertility in Three Populations of the Koala, Phascolarctos cinereus Goldfuss, in Victoria
Australian Wildlife Research
8(2) 275 - 283
Mean fertility in three koala populations in Victoria in 1979 varied from 63% on French I, to 13% at Walkerville and 22% on Phillip I. Similar differences between the two island populations have existed for at least 30 y. A method of assigning animals to age classes on the basis of the wear patterns on the premolar was devised and reproduction in 1979 examined on an age-specific basis. The low fertility was associated with a reproductive failure among females older than 3 y. On Phillip I. this is thought to be due to a widespread reproductive tract disease in females, possibly caused by ingestion of phytooestrogens from eucalypt foliage. At Walkerville a combination of reproductive tract disease, poor nutrition and heavy tick burdens is thought to be the cause.
Full text doi:10.1071/WR9810275
© CSIRO 1981