Bayside Characteristics 17 kilometres of coastline comprised mainly of cliffs & bluffs with sandy beaches interspersed between rocky headlands.
Rakali Research in Bayside - 1996 Broad general fauna survey conducted in Bayside in 1996 recommended that further survey work be carried out along the coast to assess distribution and numbers of Rakali within Bayside.
Survey Methods 17 kilometres of foreshore divided into 4 study areas (Brighton, Hampton, Black Rock & Beaumaris); 50 cage traps - baited with pilchards; One study area trapped each week; Traps checked twice a day (dawn & dusk); No trapping conducted over weekends due to high foreshore usage.
Rakali Habitat in Bayside Rakali do not tend to be found where there are wide sandy beaches; Often seen near inter-tidal reefs & stormwater drains; Forage along the strand-line.
Rakali Habitat in Bayside Sandringham Yacht Club and Royal Brighton Yacht Club have associated rocky breakwaters which provide vital habitat for Rakali in Bayside.
Rakali Habitat in Bayside Generally Rakali are found in the northern end of Bayside; Rocky protection walling & groynes seem to provide ideal habitat for Rakali, especially when adjacent to areas vegetated with Coast Salt-bush ( Atriplex cinera ).
Rakali Research in Bayside - 1998 First trapping survey of Rakali in 1998; 17 Rakali trapped & released over two 4-week trapping periods; 16 Rakali trapped in Brighton; 1 Rakali trapped in Sandringham; Rakali report with management recommendations produced & endorsed by Council in 1999.
Rakali Research in Bayside - 2000 Second trapping survey of Rakali; Trap & release permit includes micro-chipping individuals for future identification; 7 Rakali trapped, micro-chipped & released over one 4-week period; First juvenile Rakali record & first Rakali trapped in Beaumaris.
Survey Methods Repeat of methods used in 1998; Additional permit obtained to micro-chip Rakali; Permit required Ethics Committee Approval, provided by Monash University (Clayton Campus) Biological Sciences Department; Micro-chipping provided free-of-charge by Dr Alan Sherlock from Central Veterinary Hospital, Sandringham.
Rakali Research in Bayside - 2003 13 Rakali trapped & released over one 3-week period; 10 Rakali micro-chipped, one tagged individual re- captured; Rakali Management Report endorsed by Council in 2004.
Survey Methods Repeat of methods used in 1998 & 2000; Additional permit obtained to micro-chip Rakali; Permit required Ethics Committee Approval, provided by Department of Sustainability & Environment; Micro-chipping provided free-of-charge by Dr Alan Sherlock from Central Veterinary Hospital, Sandringham.
Rakali Management Recommendations in Bayside Bayside City Council should take appropriate actions to conserve & attempt to increase the Rakali population within Bayside; Survey Elster Creek (Elsternwick Golf Course) for Rakali; Limit vermin control on the foreshore to live capture traps - preferably no rodentcides to be used within 10 metres of the high water mark; Protection from predators - foxes & cats; Protection of habitat.
Proposed Rakali Research in Bayside - 2005 Radio tracking to determine exact habitat being utilised for burrows - nesting and breeding - to allow for more effective management & protection of Rakali; Joint survey work with Kingston City Council & Earthcare St Kilda; Potential to use data collected to contribute towards developing local planning policies to protect local biodiversity.
Rakali Publicity, Community Involvement & ‘Rikki Rakali’! Installation of interpretative signage at known Rakali areas - Brighton and Sandringham; The word ‘Rakali’ used instead of ‘Water Rat’; Fact sheets handed out to all foreshore groups & clubs; ‘Rikki Rakali’ visits local schools & community events - Mayor’s annual children’s picnic, Bayside Christmas Carols, Bright ’n’ Sandy Festival, Benalla & District Environment Group Rakali Project Launch and Earthcare Rakali Symposium.