Bandicoot as Gardener’s Best Friend
Enjoy a well-groomed garden with bandicoots. Bandicoots are the
surviving marsupials in Australia that are better known as gardener’s
best friend. They cause no long-term damage and are beneficial to lawns
and gardens. With a sensitive nose, they can readily sniff out insects,
worms, roots and even fungi. These omnivorous pest controllers consume a
wide variety of surface and soil dwelling invertebrates, earwigs,
cockroaches, grasshoppers, spiders, and relishes adult beetles, beetle
larvae, pupae moths, ants and termites.
The larva or scarab beetles commonly known as ‘lawn grubs’ that often
give farmers sleepless nights are tackled by bandicoots quite firmly.
These grubs feed on grass roots and patches of land. By eating, these
leaf eating ‘Christmas beetles’, bandicoots not just protect lawns, but
also reduce the beetle population quite significantly.
Like any quiet neighbour, bandicoots don’t usually attract friends or
enemies. They only make themselves known when their diggings result in
pockmarked lawns and unearthed vegetables. This confirms you with the
knowledge that your property is part of the habitat of a native
marsupial that helps in keeping pests at bay. This makes living with
bandicoots a matter of give and take.
Bandicoot activity, indicated by the appearance of small conical holes
in the lawn, is of course a welcome sign, as it means that bandicoots
are at work, eating the destructive insects before they ruin your lawn.
Their noses are highly sensitive to guide them straight to that spider
or worm in its underground hideouts. By digging, the animals are also
aerating your lawn for free, so in the spring, your lawn will grow back
with renewed vigour. They are protected and are currently under threat
due to both habitat loss and predation.
Bandicoots as people – friendly
According to the Department of Environment and Climate change:
“bandicoots may treat your garden as a sanctuary from time to time, and
you can live in harmony with them if you accompany them in
purpose-designed areas. Their small diggings don’t cause any long term
damage to lawns, gardens or farmland and in fact you might feel
privileged to have these native marsupials visiting. So if you want a
pretty garden devoid of any harmful pests, its essential you take proper
care of bandicoots.