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The eastern quoll is the smaller of the two species of quoll in Tasmania, and one of six extant quoll species from Australia and New Guinea. Like all species of quoll, they are carnivorous marsupials with spotted coats, however, the eastern quoll occurs in two distinct colour morphs; light brown and near black.
During the 19th Century, the eastern quoll was abundant across south-eastern Australia including Tasmania. By the late 19th century there were numerous newspaper reports of sick quolls and the species became far less common on the Australian mainland. It appears that the reduced population on mainland Australia was then unable to withstand the pressures of human persecution, and predation by introduced foxes and cats.
Eastern quolls were declared extinct on mainland Australia in 1963.
Although the eastern quoll has persisted since then in Tasmania, recent evidence indicates that the population is declining. The density of eastern quolls found during spotlight surveys across Tasmania decreased by around 80% between 1999 and 2009. Accordingly, it is now listed as endangered under Australian federal legislation. However, the population decline has not been uniform across Tasmania, with Bruny Island remaining a stronghold for the species.
The 1,500 acre Inala Nature Reserve on Bruny Island provides excellent habitat for eastern quolls
Inala's reserve has forested areas suitable for denning adjacent to grassland foraging areas. Eastern quolls are regularly observed on trail camera images taken in various areas of the Inala Nature Reserve. These areas are protected and maintained by the Inala Nature Foundation.