Wildlife in the City

August 31, 2019  •  Leave a Comment


Eastern Grey Kangaroo - Macropus giganteusEastern Grey Kangaroo - Macropus giganteusEastern Grey Kangaroos crossing a golf course in a suburb in Brisbane.

Wildlife in the city

Switch on the TV at any given time and you will come across nature or wildlife documentary’s somewhere far away. Beautiful scenery with stunning landscapes and then abundance of wildlife.

You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars to capture wildlife. Every city has its own population of wildlife. It is well known that falcons love high rise buildings to build their nest or use it as advantage points. It is a secure place to raise their young and the updraft created by the urban environment is what these animals love and use to hunt and go about.

Southern Boobook - Ninox novaeseelandiaeSouthern Boobook - Ninox novaeseelandiaeSouther Boobook sitting in a palm tree between two suburban houses.

In Brisbane, there are a variety of animals calling the city home. The Eastern Water Dragon - Physignathus lesueurii is said to have grown in size and has well adapted itself to life in the city. You can come across these reptiles without looking too much around. They are found in most parks with water features or close to the river.

Another animal well adapted to life in the big smoke of Brisbane is the Common Brushtail Possum - Trichosurus vulpecula or it’s relative the Common Ringtail Possum - Pseudocheirus peregrinus. You go out any time of night and you will see them roaming around the suburbs. They love the powerlines throughout the streets which they use to get around. These “possum highways” are ideal to keep away from predators such as cats and dogs.

Common Brushtail Possum - Trichosurus vulpeculaCommon Brushtail Possum - Trichosurus vulpeculaBrushtail Possum on the "possum highway". The common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula, from the Greek for "furry tailed" and the Latin for little fox, previously in the genus Phalangista) is a nocturnal, semi-arboreal marsupial of the family Phalangeridae, it is native to Australia, and the second largest of the possums. Like most possums, the common brushtail possum is nocturnal. It is mainly a folivore, but has been known to eat small mammals such as rats. In most Australian habitats, leaves of eucalyptus are a significant part of the diet but rarely the sole item eaten. The tail is prehensile and naked on its lower underside. There are four colour variations: silver-grey, brown, black, and gold. It is the Australian marsupial most often seen by city-dwellers, as it is one of few that thrives in cities, as well as a wide range of natural and human-modified environments. Around human habitations, common brushtails are inventive and determined foragers with a liking for fruit trees, vegetable gardens, and kitchen raids. (Text Source Wikipedia)

These were just two examples of animals you can come across in a city landscape. One night I was surprised seeing a Common Green Treefrog - Litoria caerulea poking out a drain cove in the middle of the city centre. I guess plenty of insects are attached to the lit up streets of a bustling city to feed a hungry frog. 

Common Green Treefrog - Litoria caeruleaCommon Green Treefrog - Litoria caeruleaGreen Tree Frog in a drain in the CBD of Brisbane. The Common Green Treefrog is a large species, growing to 110 mm. It is bright to dull green with a rounded head. There is a prominent, fleshy skin fold above the ear. The flanks may be plain or spotted with white. The belly is white and the back of the thighs are yellow to maroon. (Text Source Queensland Museum)

It is not only in subtropical cities like Brisbane where you will come across wildlife. In my hometown of Lucerne in Switzerland,  people have come across foxes an all sorts of wildlife. The best time to go out to dive into city wildlife adventures is from dusk till dawn, as most wildlife will avoid the hustle and bustle of daytime life in the city.

Carpet Python - Morelia spilota mcdowelliCarpet Python - Morelia spilota mcdowelliCarpet python in a rain gutter of a house. Morelia spilota mcdowelli is a subspecies of Morelia spilota, commonly known as the carpet python, and is informally named the Eastern, Coastal or McDowell's Carpet python. The original description and name were published by Wells and Wellington in 1984. It occurs along the northeastern coast of Australia and in New Guinea. (Text Source: Wikipedia)

So, to capture wildlife don’t look too far. You will be amazed what you will come across in your own suburbs and cities.



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