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Quantifying the population dynamics of camels in the arid and semiarid rangelands of Australia. Final Report to the Bureau of Rural Sciences Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry - Australia Prepared for the

Spencer, P.B.S., Giustiniano, D., Woolnough, A.P. and Burrows, N. (2008) Quantifying the population dynamics of camels in the arid and semiarid rangelands of Australia. Final Report to the Bureau of Rural Sciences Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry - Australia Prepared for the. Unpublished report to the Bureau of Rural Sciences, Canberra.

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Abstract

The effective control and abatement of invasive species is an emerging wildlife management problem that is expected to increase in coming decades with the rise in globalisation, urban encroachment, climate change and spread of zoonotic diseases. A common thread with many of the pest species is that the ecological information pertaining to their ecology, such as understanding the movements and population structure remains undetermined. The other problem with invasive species is they share a number of common traits, namely that they are generalists, highly fecund, with expanding ranges and have high evolutionary potential. One such species is the dromedary, or one-humped camel in Australia.

Thirty seven percent of the Australian continent is now occupied by feral camels with recent population estimates of 1,000,000 individuals. At the current rate of increase, the population is estimated to double every six to eight years. There is growing evidence that at these densities, feral camels are adversely impacting on environmental and cultural values and infrastructure in the arid zone. Control of feral animal populations is best achieved when population (and social) structuring has been delineated, and as such the aim of this study was to generate the genetic data on feral camels in Australia. This report describes the development of nuclear and mitochondrial molecular markers for Camelus dromedaries with the aim of providing a greater understanding of feral camel dispersal and structuring.

Publication Type: Report
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Publisher: Unpublished report to the Bureau of Rural Sciences
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/30787
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