Abstract: The eastern barn owl (Tyto delicatula) is a significant native predator of small mammals in Australia. Regurgitated pellets can provide important data on species presence, current or historical changes in mammal fauna over time, or data on cryptic or threatened species. We collected 125 pellets from Cravens Peak reserve, Simpson Desert, Queensland, and examined the contents, including changes in diet over time (using age of pellet as a proxy) and the relative importance of different prey. In total, 642 unique prey items were recorded, 92% of which were mammals. Small rodents were the dominant prey – Mus musculus and Pseudomys hermannsburgensis, and the presence of Notomys cf. fuscus, Pseudantechinus cf. mimulus and Dasycercus blythi were all significant, being range extensions. Such data add to more traditional or novel techniques to record community changes over time.
Kutt, A. S., Kern, P. L., Schoenefuss, P., Moffatt, K., Janetzki, H., Hurwood, D., Baker, A. M., 2020, Diet of the eastern barn owl (Tyto delicatula) in the Simpson Desert reveals significant new records and a different mammal fauna to survey data, Journal Article, viewed 30 November 2023, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=17597.