Tothill Ranges research and background information

2014 (information from the report of the Nature Conservation Society of SA Inc., April 2014- authors Tim Milne, Georgina Mollison and Erin Sautter)

A survey of the flora and fauna in the Tothill range was undertaken by the Nature conservation Society in the spring of 2008 using many volunteers from Bushland Conservation Ltd as well as others. The survey aimed to assess the biodiversity of the region for this significant area of remnant vegetation. Sixteen sites were selected and surveyed for flora and fauna. A total of 223 species of plants were recorded, 182 (82%) were native and 41 were introduced weed species.  18 mammals (including seven bats) were recorded. Ten native mammals were identified to species level, two of the seven bats were identified to genus level (the remainder to species level) and five introduced species were identified.  44 birds, 43 native and one introduced species were recorded. Three species were of state conservation significance: the White Winged Chough, the Peregrine Falcon and the Diamond Firetail. 17 reptiles made up of fifteen lizard and snake species were recorded. Three native amphibian species were found in the surveys. Eight plant species and six animal species of state conservation significance were recorded.

 

2020

Luis Williamson, a PhD student at the University of Adelaide researching the evolution of Australian sundews (Drosera spp.) and mutualistic insects (Setocoris spp.) which live on sticky leaf surfaces, feeding on captured prey asked and was given permission to work in the Tothills area.
“Last year, our group discovered that at least one undescribed Setocoris species commonly occcurs on Drosera on Kangaroo Island, through the Adelaide Hills region and in the south-east. Despite apparently being quite common, there have been few sightings of these insects in SA, and no publicly available records exist prior to our 2019 fieldwork.

Although we have (50+ year old!) records of Setocoris sightings near Mt. Remarkable, we haven’t managed to sample north of Kaiserstuhl CP yet. I’m emailing you to inquire about access to the Bushland Conservation Tothill Ranges site to sample Drosera and Setocoris over the 2020 spring season and to ask who the relevant stakeholder(s) are that we would need to contact to request permission for site access.

With the permission of Bushland Conservation, any samples would be used for research purposes only, being lodged with the State Herbarium of South Australia (Drosera) and SA Museum (Setocoris), with duplicates held by the University of Adelaide and UNSW for DNA sequencing.”