Other Names: Southern Brown Bandicoot, Short-nosed Bandicoot
Scientific Name: Isoodon obesulus fusciventer
Conservation Status: Least Concern
Body Length: 28–36 cm
Weight: 400–1850 g
Gestation: 11–12 days
Number of young: 1-6
Distribution: South-west Western Australia and Eyre Peninsula (SA).
Habitat: Forest, heath and coastal scrub
Description: Quenda, or Southern Brown Bandicoots, have long snouts, rounded ears and small, bright black eyes. Their coat is a blend of brown, black and buff fur while its feet and underparts are cream coloured. The Quenda’s tail is relatively short at a length of 8–13 cm.
Diet: Quenda are omnivores. They dig in soil to find arthropods, earthworms, tubers and fungi.
In the wild: Quendas are usually solitary and can become aggressive towards other Quenda when encounters occur. They build a dome-shaped nest in dense vegetation for protection and give birth between the end of winter and the end of summer. Quenda also have the shortest known gestation period of any marsupial, between 11 and 12 days.
Threats: The main threat to Quenda is habitat loss, but foxes and cats are also responsible for reducing numbers. Clearing, introduced weeds and trampling by livestock have forced Quendas into small patches of habitat that are unable to support larger populations.
At Perth Zoo: Look out for the Quenda in our Nocturnal House. Join the Perth Zoo-coordinated Night Stalk from 1 September to 16 October and spotlight for native animals in your local bushland. Night Stalk is a great way to become involved in community conservation action and to learn about our native animals, their habitat and their threats. Night Stalk is sponsored by Tronox.
Did you know? If you wake to find cone-shaped pits dug into your garden, then you most likely have a Quenda living nearby who has come to find food. Quenda were once plentiful in the metropolitan area but their numbers have been reduced due to habitat loss and feral pest predation.