Crunchy leaf litter underfoot is the quintessential Australian bushwalking experience.
Right? Well, No actually, that's only in recent years. The first time I walked through an area with lots of Woylies I found myself walking on moist compost like material, the result of frenetic soil scratching and food searching by the Woylies. So its been great to see this very important and impressive data and analysis on litter accumulation when a more complete suite of Australia's pre 1788 native mammals are present. To quote the article "24% less fuel for wildfires within the fenced areas than outside of them. Then, . . . a mathematical model . . . predicted a 74% reduction in flame height and a 33% reduction in the speed at which a fire would spread within the fenced-in areas, thanks to the reduction in fuel." While bringing back the mammals is a massive challenge in itself, part of the answer to better fire management in a changing climate has to be more sophisticated consideration of these sensitive ecological factors, rather than blanket prescriptions applied across vast areas.
Could biodiversity protect against wildfires? - ConservationMagazine.org