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Call on Minister D'Ambrosio to protect quoll-ity habitat

Two months ago, an endangered Spot-tailed Quoll was sighted on the southern slopes of Mt Baw Baw. Thankfully, Minister D’Ambrosio stepped in to temporarily halt logging in the area. While this is an excellent outcome and Minister D’Ambrosio should be congratulated, the sighting needs to have a new permanent special protection zone put in place around it in order to ensure the animal is properly protected from logging in the nearby Lure and Diving Spur coupes, as well as the nearby proposed coupes.

Please write to the Minister and in your own words, thank her for taking action and ask that she ensure the proper protections for the Quoll. Here are some talking points you can use when writing your letter:

  • Thank minister D’Ambrosio for stopping the logging so swiftly, and ask that she permanently protect the sighting by creating a new Special Protection Zone that prevents logging in Lure and Diving Spur coupes.
  • Spot-tailed quolls are listed as endangered under the EPBC Act 1999.
  • This is the first confirmed sighting of  Spot-tailed quoll in the Central Highlands in over two years.
  • Spot-tailed Quolls have huge home ranges of up to 5000 hectares, so 350 hectares isn’t nearly enough, but it’s a necessary start.
  • Loss of habitat from logging and land clearing is the key threat to the survival of Spot-tailed Quolls in Victoria.

The magnificent forests of Mt Baw Baw provide crucial habitat to this curious creature. We need to protect them.

Send your email here.

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Today is Threatened Species Day, and as we speak, threatened species habitat is being logged on the Southern Slopes of Mt Baw Baw.

WOTCH surveyors have found threatened Greater Gliders and Powerful Owls in this area of Mt Baw Baw, and back in April a rare Spotted-Tailed Quoll was found by nature enthusiast, Milan Stupar.

The environment minister has the power and responsibility to step in and protect threatened species. Please take action now to stop their habitat from being logged - send an email to the minister asking her to stop the logging at Mt Baw Baw.

Quolls are meant to be protected. The sighting of a Quoll in the Central Highlands region prompts the government to establish a new 500 hectare Special Protection Zone that excludes logging. After the sighting was publicised, environment minister Lily D’Ambrosio announced on Facebook that a plan would be drawn up to ensure no timber harvesting would take place in the Quoll’s habitat.

Above: Minister D'Ambrosio announces on Facebook that quoll habitat will be protected from timber harvesting.

Above: Minister D'Ambrosio announces on Facebook that quoll habitat will be protected from timber harvesting.

But on Monday, the bulldozers moved in.

Unless we act now, threatened species will be pushed closer to extinction.

Threatened Species Day commemorates the day that the last Tasmanian Tiger died in 1936, marking the extinction of the entire species. WOTCH is dedicated to making sure we don’t have a national day to commemorate the day the last Greater Glider, or Powerful Owl, or Spotted-Tailed Quoll goes extinct, but the outlook isn’t great….

We need your help. Email the environment minister now.

Will you send an email to the environment minister - who has the power - to protect the precious, irreplaceable forests of Mt Baw Baw and call on her to halt timber harvesting and establish a 500ha protection zone?

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Critical Leadbeater's Possum habitat is being logged in the Blue Range

Take action to stop the logging today.

Two weeks ago our surveyors identified Zone 1B Leadbeater’s Possum [1] habitat in a coupe about to be logged on Tom Burns Creek in the Blue Range region near Taggerty. We notified the environment department, urging them to stop the logging and conduct a comprehensive survey. But despite providing them with compelling and clear evidence that the forest meets legal protection requirements, the environment department refused to investigate and instead made up excuses as to why  logging should continue.

Ironically, this comes at the same time as the environment department is under review for its logging regulations [2]. The Review has come about as a result of the department’s consistent failure to step in and hold VicForests to account for failing to conduct pre-logging surveys, logging known threatened wildlife habitat or breaching the code of practice that dictates how they are to operate.

The survival of the possum depends on protecting its habitat. That’s why we’re calling on the environment minister to instruct her department to immediately stop logging and conduct their own pre-harvest surveys.

A hollow-bearing tree in the Sutcliffe Coupe in the Blue Range, near Taggerty in Victoria’s Central Highlands.

A hollow-bearing tree in the Sutcliffe Coupe in the Blue Range, near Taggerty in Victoria’s Central Highlands.

[1] Zone 1B Leadbeater’s Possum Habitat is a very specific kind of habitat characterised by the presence of hollow-bearing trees that provide habitat and shelter and a thick wattle understorey that provides food. Our surveyors conducted an assessment of the area over 12-hectares and found over 50 habitat trees in the area, with a density of four trees per hectare.

[2] https://www.forestsandreserves.vic.gov.au/forest-management/environmental-regulation-of-timber-harvesting

[3] The government committed to undertaking their own pre-harvest surveys in March this year, rather than relying on surveys conducted by VicForests (who have a reputation for either not surveying or surveying inadequately). https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/certainty-for-workers-and-the-future-of-our-forests/

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Take action to save the Castella coupes - a stronghold for a diversity of species including the threatened greater glider and critically endangered barred galaxias - a small native fish.

Call on Environment Minister Lily D'Ambrosio to step in and stop logging of these coupes and take appropriate action to protect the threatened species that citizen scientists have detected in the area.

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