IUCN threat status:

Endangered (EN)

Distribution

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Range Description

Stipiturus mallee has a severely fragmented distribution in the Victorian and South Australian mallee regions, Australia, south and east of the Murray River. It is currently found in Hattah-Kulkyne National Park, patchily distributed across the Murray- Sunset reserve complex and extremely rare in a small area in the eastern part of Wyperfeld National Park (Clarke and Brown 2007). In South Australia it occurs at a few small sites in Ngarkat National Park and, though last recorded from Billiatt Conservation Park in 1987, a few birds persist at the park’s edge (S. Brown in litt. in Garnett et al. 2011). Birds are unlikely to disperse more than 5 km, meaning that this species's subpopulations are effectively isolated (D. Paton in litt. 2006). It was last recorded in Bronzewing Flora and Fauna Reserve in 1997 and is considered extinct from Annuello and Wathe Fauna and Flora Reserves (Clarke and Brown 2007, Watson 2011). The population has been estimated at 15,307 (7,672–35,584) mature individuals (taking into account a male-skewed sex ratio), 14,300 of which are in the Murray-Sunset region with 500 in Hattah Kulkyne, <50 in Wyperfeld and 100 in Ngarkat (Brown et al. 2009), with the last 2 sites at least unlikely to be viable. The extent of the species's range in Ngarkat, appears to have declined by 95% (c. 90% of the range in South Australia) from about 2000 km2 in the early to mid-1990s, and numbers have gone from perhaps 'thousands' to no more than 100 individuals (D. Paton per Mustoe 2006, D. Paton in litt. 2006). Similar patterns of decline have been reported in Victora (D. Paton per Mustoe 2006), of 868 playback survey sites covering the Murray Mallee Reserve System the species was only recorded at 15 sites in the Murray-Sunset National Park and one in the Big Desert (Clarke 2006). Its status in South Australia is now considered critical (Mustoe 2006). The total area of suitable habitat was estimated to be less than 2,000 km2 by Garnett and Crowley (2000), but conservative estimates have put this at less than 4,000 km2 more recently (Mustoe 2006) . The species is expected to continue to decline over the next 10 years, as pressures from fire and drought have not altered (Mustoe 2006).

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© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

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