These works form a study into rabbit-sized Australian mammals, otherwise referred to by ecologists as "critical weight range" animals. Native animals within the weight range of 35 g to 5.5 kg are most vulnerable to being preyed upon by foxes and cats within Australia.
When describing his experience of the Southern Brown Bandicoot the 19th century naturalist John Gould wrote, “I have frequently trodden upon the almost invisible nest of this species and aroused the sleeping pair within, which would then dart away with the utmost rapidity…” Such descriptions of abundancy litters Gould’s publication, “The Mammals of Australia” (London, 1863). We do not see this abundancy anymore. For those living in eucalypt woodlands of south-eastern Australia today, where Gould travelled, the cultural references are rabbits and Eastern Grey Kangaroos.
My mammal studies bring together aspects of 19th century experience in Australia - including the burgeoning discipline of science, myths and exploitation - overlaid with biological knowledge and the first-hand experiences of today.
Research for this series was supported by the Friends of the Australian National Library Creative Arts Fellowship 2018.