Macrotis leucura


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Macrotis leucura
Species Authority: (Thomas, 1887)
Common Name(s):
English Lesser Bilby, White-tailed Rabbit-eared Bandicoot, Yallara, Lesser Rabbit-eared Bandicoot
French Bandicoot-lapin À Queue Blanche, Bandicoot-lapin Mineur, Petit Bandicoot-lapin, Petit Péramèle-lapin
Spanish Cangurito Narigudo Coliblanco

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Extinct ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Burbidge, A., Johnson, K. & Dickman, C.
Reviewer(s): Lamoreux, J. & Hilton-Taylor, C. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Listed as Extinct because it has not been located since the last specimen was collected in 1931. Aboriginal records indicate populations possibly survived into the 1960s, but there are no indications that it still persists.
1996 Extinct
1994 Extinct (Groombridge 1994)
1990 Extinct (IUCN 1990)
1988 Extinct (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1988)
1986 Extinct (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1986)
1982 Extinct (Thornback and Jenkins 1982)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species was endemic to the deserts of central Australia. The last confirmed collection of a specimen was in 1931 near Cooncherie in north-eastern South Australia (Johnson 2008). A skull of unknown age was found in 1967 in a Wedge-tailed Eagle's nest south-east of Alice Springs (Johnson 2008). Aboriginal oral history suggests survival possibly into the 1960s (Johnson 2008).
Regionally extinct:
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is presumed to be extinct. It died out completely only about 35 years after Hedley Finlayson considered it to be common (Johnson 2008).

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The species occurred in sandy and loamy deserts with Triodia hummock grassland and sparse low trees and shrubs (A. Burbidge pers. comm.).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Predation from introduced species such as cats and foxes, as well as competition with rabbits for food and degradation of habitat is thought resulted in the extinction of this species. They were also possibly affected by changes in fire regime.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no conservation measures pertaining to this species.
It is listed on CITES Appendix I.

Bibliography [top]

Burbidge, A. A., Johnson, K. A., Fuller, P. J. and Southgate, R. I. 1988. Aboriginal knowledge of the mammals of the central deserts of Australia. Australian Wildlife Research 15: 9-39.

Johnson, K. A. 2008. Lesser Bilby, Macrotis leucura. In: S. Van Dyck and R. Strahan (eds), The mammals of Australia. Third Edition, pp. 194-195. Reed New Holland, Sydney, New South Wales, USA.

Maxwell, S., Burbidge, A. A. and Morris, K. 1996. The 1996 Action Plan for Australian Marsupials and Monotremes. Australasian Marsupial and Monotreme Specialist Group, IUCN Species Survival Commission, Gland, Switzerland.

Citation: Burbidge, A., Johnson, K. & Dickman, C. 2008. Macrotis leucura. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <>. Downloaded on 27 March 2015.
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