Species Under Threat
There are 79 threatened species dependent on the forests where VicForests logging operations occur.
Many of the species at risk are found only in Victoria.
On Our Homes
Less than a hand-span in length, Leadbeater’s Possums live in a limited range in the Central Highlands. They sleep with their families in hollow trees during the day and run through the understorey at night, hunting for insects and sweet nectar.
They are the Faunal Emblem of the State of Victoria. There are only 680 known possum colonies remaining, which represents between 1500-2000 individuals.
The Baw Baw Frog is Victoria’s only endemic frog and is found only on the plateau and surrounding escarpments of Mount Baw Baw. It is critically endangered, with only 2 percent of its 1983 population found in 2004. It is particularly sensitive to habitat disturbance due to logging.
Its conservation priority is of the highest level. Its habitat is mostly centred on cool temperate mixed rainforest communities that provide a buffer to these impacts. Note: The majority of sightings generally for the Baw Baw Frog were between 1955 and 2004.
The endangered Barred Galaxias (Galaxias fuscus) is a small, scaleless, non-migratory freshwater fish endemic to a small upland area in central Victoria. It has suffered an extensive decline in range and abundance, and now occurs only in small, isolated, remnant populations in short sections of small headwater streams.
All remaining populations are at high risk from a number of factors, including logging and bushfires which impacts their aquatic habitats through siltation.
The Tiger Quoll, also known as the Spotted-Tail Quoll, is mainland Australia’s largest carnivorous marsupial, and the world’s longest existing carnivorous marsupial. They are found in Eastern Australian as well as Tasmania.
Logging has had a significant impact on their population in Victoria, with a decline of nearly 50%. They are listed as critically endangered in Victoria despite their populations remaining somewhat steady in other parts of Australian where their habitat has greater protection.
This nocturnal, solitary creature is found throughout the eucalypt forests of eastern Australia, from up in Mossman, Queensland right down to the town of Daylesford in Victoria. Just like a koala, it has a highly specialised diet, and feeds exclusively on eucalypt leaves, buds, flowers and mistletoe.
The Greater Glider is a nocturnal, solitary creature with a specialised diet of eucaplytus leaves, buds, flowers and mistletoe. It is the largest species in the ringtail possum family.
It can glide for distances of up to 100 metres, which is handy in getting between its tree-trunk dens.
The greater glider’s large, flappy gliding membranes are superb for flight, but a hindrance to manoeuvring on the ground, such that it is known as “the clumsy possum”.
The Powerful Owl is the largest nocturnal bird in Australia. It has a relatively small head and a rounded tail. The eyes are yellow, set in a dark grey/brown facial mask.
The legs are feathered and the yellow to orange feet are massive, with sharp talons for hunting small mammals. Like the Sooty Owl it is threatened by the loss of mature hollow-bearing trees.
Revive the regions:
5 MCGs worth of native forests are logged every day in Victoria.
Native forest logging destroys forests and hurts surrounding communities.
PROTECT THESE PLACES
East Gippsland’s ecological diversity, scenic beauty and wilderness values are one of Victoria’s greatest natural assets. It has a continuity of natural ecosystems from alpine to coastal landscapes. From snow-capped mountains to lush warm and cool temperate rainforests, all the way through to Victoria’s rugged coasts—these old growth forests are of unparalleled natural beauty and importance.
East Gippsland occupies just 9% of Victoria, yet is home to approximately one third of the state’s threatened species. This makes the region extremely important as a sanctuary for their survival.
The Strathbogie forest has been documented to contain Victoria’s highest population density of Greater Gliders, although no protections for them have been created in the area. The region boasts forest that has been left untouched since colonial settlement, with trees spanning hundreds of years old and 3.9 metres in diameter.
Much of Australia’s agriculture relies on this forest, as bees are transported there from over the country so colonies can recover utilising the diverse range of pollens the area provides.
The Central Highlands region of Australia is primarily forested land, home to species like the faunal emblem of the Victorian state – the critically endangered Leadbeater’s Possum – as well as the world’s tallest flowering plant, a gum tree called Mountain Ash. The area provides practically all the water for Melbourne – the capital of Victoria and, with 4.4 million people, the second biggest city in Australia. The Central highlands also provide water for irrigating crops, and supports tourism, as well as a small timber industry that uses both native forests and plantations.
The region’s native forests are home to 38 threatened species, including Victoria’s animal emblem the critically endangered Leadbeater’s Possum (Gymnobelideus leadbeateri). These tree-dwelling marsupials rely on hollow-bearing trees in montane ash forests for den sites. Mountain Ash (Eucalyptus regnans), begin forming cavities critical for these species after only 120 years, yet logging cycles are much shorter.
Mirboo North’s forest comprises a precinct of a biodiverse eucalypt forest in a region totally devastated by farming and logging since 1880. It has a Some of the native animals to be seen are the Wombat, Koala, Black Wallaby, Short Nosed and Long Nosed Bandicoots, Swamp Rat, Greater Glider, Feathertail and Ringtail Possums, Echidna, Platypus and little Brown Rat. Most of these are nocturnal in habit.
The community of Mirboo North has worked hard to establish the Lyrebird Forest Walk, which is bushwalk through native forests typical of the South Gippsland region. The Superb Lyrebird is often seen in patches of dense scrub along the track. Mirboo North’s forests will be devastated by planned logging that VicForests will commence later in 2018 or in 2019. There is widespread opposition to the plan from the entire community of Mirboo North.
The Rubicon Valley, centred on the Royston Valley, is forested with antarctic beech, banks of tree ferns and understorey plants. Campsites, tourism operators and farming depend on the integrity of the forest for their operation. It has a small hydro power station, originally built in 1922, and still operating today.
It was heavily logged in the early 20th Century, and would make a major recovery if it were not for decimation by logging.