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Race Against Extinction
"Fighting the Presence of the European Red Fox in Tasmania"
Imagine 18 different species of animals becoming extinct because one four legged mammal was accidentally (or maliciously) tossed into an environment where it landed at the top of the food chain.
This lucky mammal is the European Red Fox. Native Tasmanian animal species have no defense against foxes since they have not had to adapt to survive these voracious hunters.
Since being introduced, the European Red Fox is responsible for the extinction of several species on the mainland of Australia.
The Eastern Quoll and Pademalon are thought to be extinct, the Bettong is critically endangered and while these animals still thrive in Tasmania they are among 78 native vertebrate species that will be at risk if the fox becomes established.
The fox also threatens Tasmania's agricultural industry.
Domestic poultry and sheep are targeted by these predators. Foxes can carry diseases which affect domestic stock in addition to native wildlife. The economic losses caused by fox attacks on livestock could exceed $34.5 million per year in Tasmania's sheep industry alone.