CSIRO Publishing blank image blank image blank image blank imageBooksblank image blank image blank image blank imageJournalsblank image blank image blank image blank imageAbout Usblank image blank image blank image blank imageShopping Cartblank image blank image blank image You are here: Journals > Wildlife Research   
Wildlife Research
Journal Banner
  Ecology, management and conservation in natural and modified habitats
blank image Search
blank image blank image
blank image
  Advanced Search

Journal Home
About the Journal
Editorial Structure
Online Early
Current Issue
Just Accepted
All Issues
Special Issues
Sample Issue
For Authors
General Information
Submit Article
Author Instructions
Open Access
For Referees
Referee Guidelines
Review an Article
Annual Referee Index
For Subscribers
Subscription Prices
Customer Service
Print Publication Dates
Library Recommendation

blue arrow e-Alerts
blank image
Subscribe to our Email Alert or RSS feeds for the latest journal papers.

red arrow Connect with us
blank image
facebook twitter logo LinkedIn


Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 16(4)

Effect of Fire on the Availability of Hollows in Trees Used by the Common Brushtail Possum, Trichosurus Vulpecula Kerr, 1792, and the Ringtail Possum, Pseudocheirus Peregrinus Boddaerts, 1785.

GB Inions, MT Tanton and SM Davey

Australian Wildlife Research 16(4) 449 - 458
Published: 1989


Characteristics of trees used for shelter during the day by brushtail and ringtail possums were identified in a study in open forest dominated by Eucalyptus marginata and E. calophylla in the Perup Fauna Nature Reserve, SW Western Australia. The effect of high-intensity fire on the availability of trees used by the possums was studied by comparing a burnt area (36 ha) with an unburnt area (22 ha) one and 32 months after the fire. Suitable hollows were used by possums regardless of the species, condition, height or size of the tree. Hollows deeper than 1 m were used significantly more frequently than shallow ones. Hollows of suitable size appear to develop in E. marginata when trees reach a mean age of about 300 yr, and in E. calophylla when trees reached a mean age of about 200 yr. The average age of trees inhabited by possums could be as high as 500 yr for E. marginata and 400 yr for E. calophylla. About 3 trees/ha were used by possums for diurnal refuge; the distribution of these trees was random. Fire of high intensity (1000-1400 kW/m) destroyed 38% of the trees previously inhabited by possums; the damage to other inhabited trees was related to their condition and the intensity of fire. In the longer term, high-intensity fire increased the rate of formation of hollows by direct excavation or by providing new sites for fungal and termite infestation. Thirty-two months after the fire, the average age of trees containing suitable hollows was estimated to be about 100 yr less than before the fire because of the destruction of older trees and the formation of new hollows, or the deepening of existing ones, in younger trees.

Full text doi:10.1071/WR9890449

© CSIRO 1989

blank image
Subscriber Login

PDF (504 KB) $25
 Export Citation
Legal & Privacy | Contact Us | Help


© CSIRO 1996-2016