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Regional centers along the eastern coast of Australia are witnessing an unprecedented increase in infrastructure development. The combined effects of suburbanization of former farmland, the conversion of bushland to housing estates and the upgrade of major motorways sees the traditional habitat of eastern grey Kangaroos reduced, fragmented and isolated. The result is an increase in kangaroo density in habitat-isolates, a subsequent increase in human-wildlife conflict, and a reduction in kangaroo health and welfare status.

The situation with peri-urban kangaroo management is not unlike the management of deer in suburban areas throughout the world.  In general, there is frequent opposition to the use of lethal control techniques within this context. Australian wildlife biologists have been investigating non-lethal management options, principally the use of fertility control, to meet this management challenge.

This free webinar will provide an overview of the management challenges posed by peri-urban kangaroo populations and will review the current state of the field of fertility control as applied to free-living kangaroo populations.  Highlights include key technical and policy challenges that limit the more widespread use of fertility control to manage suburban kangaroo populations, current research directions, and the way forward.

ABOUT THE PRESENTER – CATHERINE HERBERT 

Catherine (Cathy) Herbert, Associate Professor in the School of Life and Environmental Sciences at theUniversity of Sydney, has worked on the reproductive management of marsupials, including wallabies, koalas, bettongs, Tasmanian devils, and kangaroos, for the last 20 years.  She has published 19 peer-reviewed journal articles on the management of marsupial populations and wildlife fertility control.

Her current research passion is working to understand the impacts of coastal infrastructure development on eastern grey kangaroo populations. A cornerstone of this work is the development of efficacious approaches to the use of fertility control in these controversial management scenarios so that non-lethal control methods can be routinely incorporated into peri-urban kangaroo management programs.