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Range DescriptionStipiturus mallee has a severely fragmented distribution in the Victorian and South Australian mallee regions, Australia, south and east of the Murray River. In South Australia, birds were found in Ngarkat and associated conservation parks but, in 1989, apparently disappeared from the isolated Billiatt Conservation Park as a result of fire. In Victoria, birds ranged from Sunset Country, east to Anuello Fauna and Flora Reserve, south-east of Hattah-Kulkyne National Park, and in the Big Desert (Wyperfeld) east to Bronzewing State Faunal Reserve. The species is now considered to be confined to three subpopulations: Ngarkat Conservation Park, Murray Sunset National Park, and Hattah-Kulkyne National Park and adjacent Crown land1. Birds are unlikely to disperse more than 5 km, meaning that this species's subpopulations are effectively isolated3. The population was estimated at c.10,000 individuals and judged to be declining by Garnett and Crowley (2000), though at the time there was no reasonable data for estimating the population using any formal methodology1. More recently the population has been estimated at only 2,100-4,200 individuals, including perhaps 1,500-2,800 mature individuals1. Declines have been significant in the southern and western parts of the species's range. Some isolated populations in Victoria and South Australia are now considered to be very small and in some cases verging on extinction1. The Ngarkat population is now considered to be the only viable population remaining in South Australia, due to a series of fires that have affected the conservation park since 20042. 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 individuals2,3. Similar patterns of decline have been reported in Victora2, 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 Desert6. Its status in South Australia is now considered critical1. 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 recently1 . The species is expected to continue to decline over the next 10 years, as pressures from fire and drought have not altered1.