Perameles eremiana Spencer, 1897:9

Desert bandicoot, Orange-backed bandicoot, mulgaruquirra (Alice Springs), iwurra (Charlotte Waters), walilya (Warburton region)



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status


Last record: 1931 (Flannery et al., 1990); 1943 (Fisher & Blomberg, 2012; Lee et al., 2017; Gordon, 2023); 1960's (Johnson, 2006:169); between 1964 and 1969 (according to local aborigines)

IUCN RedList status: Extinct


First collected in the Northern Territory in 1896 by F. J. Gillen and P. M. Byrne. Gordon (2008) has suggested that Perameles eremiana is synonymous with P. bougainville, disagreeing with Freeman's (1967) delineation of the two species. The pintupi people of central Australia claimed to have eaten them as recently as 1964/69 (Burbidge et al., 1988).



Northern Territory (southern), South Australia (northern) & Western Australia (southeastern), Australia

Type locality: "Burt Plain, N of Alice Springs, N.T., central Australia (as 40 miles NE of Charlotte Waters, N.T.)" (Mahoney & Ride, 1988:41)


Anatomy & Morphology

Body mass: ~200gm (Johnson, 2006:169)


Biology & Ecology

"Ecology: terrestrial, nocturnal, hummock grassland; sand ridge desert, shallow nesting depression."

(Mahoney & Ride, 1988:41)



Holotype: NMV C5864 (male; in spirits) (Mahoney & Ride, 1988:41)






Original scientific description:

Spencer, Baldwin. (1897). Description of two new species of marsupials from Central Australia. Proc. R. Soc. Vict. (new series) 9: 5-11.


Other references:

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Burbidge, A., Johnson, K. & Aplin, K. (2008). Perameles eremiana. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.1. ( Downloaded on 22 September 2011.

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