Australian Mammalogy Australian Mammalogy Society
Journal of the Australian Mammal Society
RESEARCH ARTICLE

What we don’t know and haven’t learned about cost–benefit prioritisation of rock-wallaby management

Todd Soderquist

6 Garibaldi Street, Armidale, NSW 2350, Australia. Email: todd.soderquist@hotmail.com

Australian Mammalogy 33(2) 202-213 http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/AM10053
Submitted: 9 December 2010  Accepted: 26 July 2011   Published: 12 September 2011

Abstract

Research and translocations of brush-tailed rock-wallabies (Petrogale penicillata) in New South Wales have, in conjunction with studies in Victoria and Queensland, provided extensive insights yet also document the high variability in the species’ response to management. Nonetheless, experts are being asked to quantify predicted response for cost–benefit prioritisation models that will rank threatened species and populations worthy of future funding, with little consideration of the basic principles behind adaptive management. The weaknesses of these prioritisation models must be evaluated carefully by experts in order that appropriate advice is provided which genuinely assists decision-making. I explore the questions facing rock-wallaby ecologists as a case study of how much more we need to know and learn within adaptive approaches to conservation before our predictions are robust.


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