The Recently Extinct Plants and Animals Database

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Conilurus albipes (Lichtenstein, 1829)

White-footed rabbit-rat, White-footed tree-rat, White-footed hapalotis, White-footed jerboa-rat (Ogilby, 1892:114), White-footed jerboa rat (Lucas & Le Souëf, 1909:31)

 

 

Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Synonym/s: Hapalotis albipes Lichtenstein, 1829; Conylurus constructor Ogilby, 1838:126; Conilurus constructor Ogilby, 1838:126 [used by Krefft, 1864:64]

 

Conservation Status

Last Record: c. 1860-1862; c.1875 (Dickman et al., 1993); before 1939? (unconfirmed anecdotes; Flannery, 1990:70)

 

IUCN RedList status: Extinct

 

May have survived until 1875 (Dickman et al., 1993). Troughton (1957:310) states that "the beautiful and quite harmless species has apparently not been received or reported at any local museum for about fifty years", although this text was probably retained and carried over "as is" from the first edition of that work*, so a more accurate last recorded date would be c.1891.

* The exact same text appears, wholly unmodified, in the 1973 edition of his work.

According to (Flannery, 1990:70-71), Mr Norman Maher from Deniliquin (southern NSW) told of often encountering an animal roughly matching the description of the White-footed rabbit-rat prior to the outbreak of WWII. Accompanied by his terrier while rabbit hunting in a small area of woodland several kilometres north of Deniliquin, the animals would occupy hollow logs stuffed with nesting material to a depth of roughly 60cm.

 

Distribution

South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland, Australia

 

Biology

 

 

Hypodigm

See (Fisher, 1984:210) for specimens held in the Merseyside County Museums

According to (Flannery, 1990:70) a painting from the Sydney region during the 1790's refers to this species, several decades prior to its scientific description.

 

Media

 

 

References

Original scientific description:

Lichtenstein, H. (1829). Darstellung neuer oder wenig bekannter Säugethiere in Abbildungen und Beschreibungen von fünf und sechzig Arten auf funfzig colorirten Steindrucktafeln nach den Originalen des Zoologischen Museums der Universität zu Berlin. Hft 6. Berlin: C.G. Lüderitz.

 

Other references:

Archer, Michael "Mike". (1978). Quaternary vertebrate faunas from the Texas Caves of southeastern Queensland. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 19(1): 61-109.

Bilney, R.J., Cooke, R. and White, J.G. 2010. Underestimated and severe: small mammal decline from the forests of south-eastern Australia since European settlement, as revealed by a top-order predator. Biological Conservation 143: 52-59.

Cramb, Jonathan and Hocknull, Scott. (2010). New Quaternary records of Conilurus (Rodentia: Muridae) from eastern and northern Australia with the description of a new species. Zootaxa 2634: 41-56. [Abstract]

Dawson, L. and Augee, M. L. (1997). The late Quaternary sediments and fossil cave vertebrate fauna from Cathedral Cave, Wellington Caves, New South Wales. Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W. 117: 51-78.

Dickman, C. R., Pressey, R. L. and Parnaby, H. E. (1993). Mammals of particular conservation concern in the Western Division of New South Wales. Biological Conservation 65(3): 219-248. [Abstract]

Dixon, Joan M. (1983). White-footed rabbit rat Conilurus albipes, pp. 382. In: Strahan, Ronald. (ed.). The Australian Museum Complete book of Australian mammals. Angus and Robertson : Sydney.

Dixon, Joan M. (1995). White-footed tree-rat, Conilurus albipes. Pp. 552-553, in Mammals of Australia (R. Strahan, ed.). Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C., 756 pp.

Dixon JM (2008) White-footed rabbit-rat, Conilurus albipes. In: Van Dyck S and Strahan R (eds) The Mammals of Australia. 3rd Edition. Sydney: New Holland Publishers, pp. 578-579.

Fisher, Clem T. (1984). Australasian mammal specimens in the collections of Merseyside County Museums. Australian Mammology 7(4): 205-213.

Flannery, Timothy. (1990). Australia's Vanishing Mammals: Endangered and Extinct Native Species. Sydney: RD Press. 192 pp.

Freudenthal, M. and Martín-Suárez, E. (2013). Estimating body mass of fossil rodents. Scripta Geologica 145: 1-130. [0.200 kg estimate]

Fusco, Diana A., McDowell, Matthew C. and Prideaux, Gavin J. (2015). Late-Holocene mammal fauna from southern Australia reveals rapid species declines post-European settlement: Implications for conservation biology. The Holocene. doi: 10.1177/0959683615618261

Gervais, Paul. (1844). Atlas de zoologie: ou collection de 100 planches. Paris: Germer Bailliere. [pl. 7]

Goodwin, Harry A. and Goodwin, J. M. (1973). List of mammals which have become extinct or are possibly extinct since 1600. Int. Union Conserv. Nat. Occas. Pap. 8: 1-20.

Gould, John. (1863). The Mammals of Australia. Vol. III. London: Taylor and Francis. [Re-issued in 1976 as Placental Mammals of Australia, with modern commentaries by Joan M. Dixon, Macmillan: Melbourne]

Gray. (1839). Ann. Nat. Hist., ii, p. 308.

Gray, John Edward. (1843). List of the specimens of Mammalia in the collection of the British Museum. London: The Trustees, British Museum. xxviii + 216 pp.

Griffiths, M., and N. G. Simms. (1993). Observations on the anatomy of mammary glands in two species of conilurine rodent (Muridae: Hydromyinae) and in an opossum (Marsupialia: Didelphidae). Australian Mammalogy 16: 9-15.

Hoser, Raymond T. (1991). Endangered Animals of Australia. Mosman, NSW: Pierson & Co. 240 pp. [pp. 157]

Krefft, Gerard. (1864). Catalogue of Mammalia in the Collection of the Australian Museum. Sydney: Australian Museum.

Krefft, Gerard. (1871). The Mammals of Australia, Illustrated by Harriett Scott and Helena Forde for the Council of Education ; With a Short Account of All the Species Hitherto Described. Sydney: Thomas Richards, Government Printer.

Lidicker, W. Z., Jr., and P. V. Brylski. (1987). The conilurine rodent radiation of Australia, analyzed on the basis of phallic morphology. Journal of Mammalogy 68: 617-641.

Lucas, Arthur Henry Shakespeare and Le Souëf, William Henry Dudley. (1909). The Animals of Australia: Mammals, Reptiles and Amphibians. Melbourne: Whitcombe and Tombs.

Macken, Amy C. and Reed, Elizabeth H. (2013). Late Quaternary small mammal faunas of the Naracoorte caves world heritage area. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 137(1): 53-67.

Mahoney, J. A. (1969). A reidentification of the Australian Muridae in the Leiden Museum listed by F. A. Jentink in 1887 and 1888. Zoologische Mededelingen 43(21): 279-286.

Mahoney, J. A. (1982). Identities of the rodents (Muridae) listed in TL Mitchell's " Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia, with descriptions of the recently explored region of Australia Felix, and of the present colony of New South Wales" (1st ed., 1838; 2nd ed., 1839). Australian Mammalogy [b]5(1)[/b]: 15-36.

Mahoney, J. A., and B. J. Richardson. (1988). Muridae. Pp. 154-192, in Zoological catalogue of Australia. Mammalia (J. L. Bannister, et. al.). Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra, 5: 1-274.

Mahoney, J.A. in Walton, D.W. (ed.) (1988). Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Vol. 5 Mammalia. Canberra: Australian Government Publishing Service x 274 pp.

Mansergh, I. and Hercus, L. (1981). An Aboriginal vocabulary of the fauna of Gippsland. Mem. Nat. Museum of Vict. 42:201-228.

McDowell, Matthew and Medlin, Graham. (2009). Mammal Remains, including the White-footed Rabbit-rat '[i]Conilurus albipes[/i]', from the Fleurieu Peninsula, South Australia. The South Australian Naturalist 83(1): 26-28. [Automatic download]

Menkhorst, P. W. (ed.). (1995). Mammals of Victoria: distribution, ecology and conservation. Melbourne, Oxford University Press, 359 pp.

Menkhorst P (2011) Mammals. In: Joyce EB and McCann DA (eds) Burke and Wills: The Scientific Legacy of the Victorian Exploring Expedition, Chapter 5 Zoology: An Encounter with the Fauna of Australia’s Unique Arid Environment. Collingwood: CSIRO Publishing, pp. 138–147.

Mulvaney DJ, Lawton GH, Twidale CR et al. (1964) Archaeological excavation of rock shelter No. 6, Fromm’s Landing, South Australia. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria 77(2): 479–516.

Norris. K, Mansergh. I, Ahern. L, Belcher. C, Temby. I. & Walsh, N., (1983) Vertebrate Fauna of the Gippsland Lake Catchment, Victoria. Fish & Wildl. Vict. Occas. Pap. No. 1, Fisheries & Wildlife Service, Victoria.

Ogilby, J. Douglas. (1838). Trans. Linn. Soc., xviii, p. 126.

Ogilby, J. Douglas. (1892). Catalogue of Australian Mammals, with Introductory Notes on General Mammalogy. Australian Museum, Sydney: Catalogue No. 16: viii + 142 pp. [p. 114-115]

Parris, M. S. (1950). From Melbourne to the Murray in 1839. Vict. Nat. 66: 187-188.

Price, Gilbert J., Louys, Julien, Smith Garry K. and Cramb Jonathan. (2019). Shifting faunal baselines through the Quaternary revealed by cave fossils of eastern Australia. PeerJ 6: e6099.

Prideaux, G. J., R. G. Roberts, D. Megirian, K. E. Westaway, J. C. Hellstrom, and J. M. Olley. (2007). Mammalian responses to Pleistocene climate change in southeastern Australia. Geology 35: 33-36.

Reed, E. H. and Bourne, S. J. (2000). Pleistocene fossil vertebrate sites of the South East region of South Australia. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 124: 61-90.

Ride, W. D. L. (1970). A Guide to the Native Mammals of Australia. Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Robinson, A. C., Kemper, C. M., Medlin, G. C. and Watts, C. H. S. (2000). The rodents of South Australia. Wildlife Research 27(4): 379-404.

Seebeck, J. and Menkhorst, P. (2000). Status and conservation of the rodents of Victoria. Wildlife Research 27: 357-369.

Seebeck, John H., WIlson, Barbara A. and Menkhorst, Peter W. (2003). Conservation and management of hydromyine rodents in Victoria, Australia, 89-94. In: Grant R. Singleton, Lyn A. Hinds, Charles J. Krebs and Dave M. Spratt, 2003. Rats, mice and people: rodent biology and management. ACIAR Monograph No. 96. 564pp.

Smith, A. P. and Quin, D. G. (1996). Patterns and causes of extinction and decline in Australian conilurine rodents. Biological Conservation 77: 243-267.

Tasmanian Society. (1846). Minutes of the Tasmanian Society , August 20, 1845. Tasmanian Journal of Natural Science, Agricultural, Statistics, etc. 2:460.

Tate, G. H. H. (1951). Results of the Archbold Expeditions. No. 65. The rodents of Australia and New Guinea. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 97: 183-430. [pp. 270-271]

Thornback, Jane and Jenkins, Martin (compilers). (1982). The IUCN Mammal Red Data Book. Part 1: Threatened Mammalian Taxa of the Americas and the Australasian Zoogeographic Region (Excluding Cetacea). Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. 516 pp.

Troughton, Ellis Le Geyt. (1941). Furred Animals of Australia. Sydney: Angus and Robertson Ltd.

Troughton, Ellis Le Geyt. (1957). Furred Animals of Australia, 6th edition. Sydney: Angus & Robertson.

Troughton, Ellis Le Geyt. (1973). Furred Animals of Australia, revised and abridged 9th edition. Sydney: Angus and Robertson. ["This revised and abridged edition first published in 1973"]

Wakefield, N. A. (1963a). Mammal sub-fossils from near Portland. Vict. Nat. 80: 39-45.

Wakefield, N. A. (1963b). Mammal remains from the Grampians, Victoria. Victorian Naturalist 80, 130-133.

Wakefield, N. A. (1964). Appendix I. Mammal remains, pp. 494-498. In: Mulvaney, D. J., Lawton, G. H. and Twidale, C. R. (eds.). Archaeological excavation of Rock Shelter No. 6, Fromm’s Landing, South Australia. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria 77: 479-516.

Wakefield, N. A. (1972). Palaeoecology of fossil mammal assemblages from some Australian caves. Proc. R. Soc. Vict. 85:1-26.

Wakefield, N.A. (1974) Mammals of Western Victoria, in Douglas, M.H. & O'Brien, L (eds.). The Natural Histroy of Western Victoria. Australian Institute of Agricultural Science: Horsham, (pages 35-51).

Watts, C. H. S., and H. J. Aslin. 1981. The rodents of Australia. Angus and Robertson, Sydney, 321 pp.

Watts, C. H. S., Baverstock, P. R. and Birrell, J. and Krieg, M. (1992). Phylogeny of the Australian Rodents (Muridae) - a Molecular Approach Using Microcomplement Fixation of Albumin. Australian Journal of Zoology 40(1): 81-90. [Abstract]

Wells, Rod T., Moriarty, K. and Williams, D. L. G. (1984). The fossil vertebrate deposits of Victoria Fossil Cave Naracoorte: an introduction to the geology and fauna. The Australian Zoologist 21(4): 305-333.

Williams, L. M., and P. W. Menkhorst. (1995). White-footed rabbit-rat, Conilurus albipes. Pp. 202-203, in Mammals of Victoria: distribution, ecology and conservation (P. W. Menkhorst, ed.). Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 360 pp.

Wilson, D. E. and Reeder, D. M. (2005). Mammal species of the world: a taxonomic and geographic reference. Third edition. Baltimore, MD: John Hopkins University Press.

Woinarski, J. and Burbidge, A. A. (2016). Conilurus albipes. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T5223A22450334. Downloaded on 23 July 2016.

Woinarski J, Burbidge A and Harrison P (2014) Action Plan for Australian Mammals 2012. Collingwood: CSIRO Publishing.

https://books.google.com.au/books?hl=en&lr=&id=45HdXSqmWvoC&oi=fnd&pg=PA15&dq=myrmecobius+rufus&ots=H2GwmaSq6i&sig=06fmtOW8kG32imSbTCmEKPc2Ack#v=onepage&q=myrmecobius%20rufus&f=false

https://www.depi.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/246832/Rabbit-Eared-Tree-Rat-Conilurus-albipes.pdf

ftp://rock.geosociety.org/pub/reposit/2007/2007016.pdf

https://www.theage.com.au/victoria/whitefooted-rabbit-rat-fossil-identified-in-east-gippsland-cave-20160801-gqidez.html

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3719696/Fossils-mysterious-cave-creature-identified-40-years-Experts-believe-mammal-white-footed-RABBIT-RAT.html

https://extinctanimals.proboards.com/thread/7031/white-footed-rabbit-conilurus-albipes

 

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