The Greater Bilby is an iconic threatened marsupial that was once widespread throughout arid and semi-arid Australia. Today, their distribution has declined to about 80% of the original range. Remaining populations are small and fragmented, restricted to areas in the Gibson, Great Sandy and Tanami Deserts, parts of the Pilbara and south-western Queensland. Due to this, the status of the Greater Bilby is now nationally classified as ‘vulnerable’.
The primary causes of the widespread decline of the Greater Bilby are predation by feral foxes and cats, changed fire regimes, competition with rabbits and habitat degradation by stock. Without effective on-ground management to address these key threats, the Greater Bilby population will continue to decline.
Taronga is partnering with Save the Bilby Fund and in 2015 supported a national strategy for Bilby conservation. From that strategy, Taronga has supported a population and habitat viability assessment, an Indigenous Bilby Festival, the development of a large area to breed large numbers of Bilbies to move to other semi-wild areas, and are working to understand the status of wild Bilbies in identified areas within Queensland.