Sarcoptic mange incidence in bare-nosed wombats (Vombatus ursinus)

Hayley Stannard, J. Wolfenden, Eden M. Hermsen, Blaire Vallin, Nicole E. Hunter, Julie M Old

Research output: Other contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Sarcoptic mange is a threat to bare-nosed wombats (Vombatus ursinus) in Australia and a major factorcontributing to the decline in populations of this species. It is caused by a mite, Sarcoptes scabiei, and ifuntreated can lead to severe irritation, blindness, starvation and eventual death. Our study aimed to estimateand compare the population numbers of bare-nosed wombats at three study sites, and to determine howrainfall, temperature and humidity influenced the incidence of sarcoptic mange in bare-nosed wombatpopulations. Macropod and rabbit abundance were also compared to wombat abundance and sarcopticmange prevalence at the three study sites. Across the study sites a total of 1655 bare-nosed wombats wereobserved. Sarcoptic mange prevalence was between 8.9% and 40.3% depending on location and year.Sarcoptic mange prevalence correlated to yearly rainfall, with a higher incidence of sarcoptic mangeoccurring in higher rainfall years. Further monitoring is required to ensure sarcoptic mange prevalence doesnot increase at the study sites. Increases in prevalence will likely lead to the extinction of small and isolatedpopulations in years with high rainfall.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019
EventAustralian Mammal Society Conference - The University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Duration: 07 Jul 201911 Jul 2019
Conference number: 65 (Conference website)


ConferenceAustralian Mammal Society Conference
Internet address


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