Spotted-tail Quoll / Tiger Quoll

The spotted-tail quoll (Dasyurus maculates), also known as the Tiger Quoll, can be distinguished from other quoll species by – you guessed it – its spotted tail. The tiger quoll is mostly nocturnal and is about the size of a domestic cat, with irregular white spots on its back and tail, and a pale belly. The tiger quoll is classed as vulnerable in NSW and is an endangered animal nationally.

An excellent climber, the tiger quoll consumes a variety of prey, including gliders, possums, small wallabies, rats, birds, bandicoots, rabbits and insects. It also eats carrion and takes domestic fowl.

Tiger Quoll or Spotted-tail Quoll (Dasyurus maculatus), southeastern Australia
Tiger Quoll or Spotted-tail Quoll (Dasyurus maculatus), southeastern Australia

Tiger quoll quoll habitat

The range of the tiger quoll has been reduced in size considerably and it is now found only on the east coast of NSW. The tiger quoll lives within a range of habitats, including rainforest, open forest, woodlands, coastal heath and inland riparian forest, from the sub-alpine zone to the coastline.

Quolls travel along densely vegetated creeklines. Individuals make their dens in hollow-bearing trees, fallen logs, small caves, rock crevices, boulder fields and rocky-cliff faces.

Threats to the tiger quoll

Loss, fragmentation and degradation of habitat are the main threats to the spotted-tail quoll. Accidental and deliberate poisoning, shooting and trapping are also of concern, and the quolls compete for food with introduced predators such as cats and foxes.

Solutions – What can be done?

To protect the tiger quoll, land owners are advised to undertake cat and fox controls using poison-baiting techniques that are least likely to affect quolls. However, perhaps the most important safeguard is to retain and protect large, forested areas with hollow logs and rocky outcrops, particularly in areas with thick understoreys or dense vegetation along drainage lines.

The Nature Conservation Trust is currently raising funds to help protect quoll habitat on private land. You can make a donation or find out more about the campaign Who is Quentin?