Greater bilby (Macrotis lagotis) burrows, diggings and scats in the Pilbara

Document Type

Journal Article


Royal Society of Western Australia Inc.


Faculty of Business and Law


School of Marketing, Tourism and Leisure




Thompson, G. G., & Thompson, S. A. (2008). Greater Bilby (Macrotis lagotis) burrows, diggings and scats in the Pilbara. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia, 91, 21-25. Available here


The greater bilby (Macrotis lagotis) is a conservation significant species because of a contraction in its geographic range and is now only found in a few locations in Australian sandy deserts and the Pilbara of Western Australia. We report on the presence of eight burrows and 605 diggings and scratchings in an area of about 9 ha for a small group of greater bilbies in the Pilbara. We describe burrows that were located adjacent to or under rocks, under an old termite mound and in mature spinifex. Most of the activity area, which had been burnt six months earlier, contained diggings and scratchings that we divided into three categories: nose cone diggings, scratchings and circular holes. Numerous scratchings contained the characteristic scats which can be used to identify the presence of greater bilby in an area. This paper provides information on the evidence that can be used to determine the presence of greater bilby in the Pilbara.

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