In recent weeks, WIRES has received calls from concerned members and the general public, regarding logging in Mogo State Forest. There are concerns for a number of threatened species living in compartment 147 and 148 near the Dunns Creek area.
Earlier this month, WIRES members and the National Parks Association sighted two Greater gliders in the area. They also saw markings and heard calls of Yellow-bellied gliders, which are listed as ‘Vulnerable’ by the NSW Government.
The discoveries, made by volunteer members of WIRES, Coastwatchers and The Dunns Creek Resident Action Group, have caused them to call into serious question the adequacy of the Forestry Corporation of NSW’s pre-logging assessments.
“The Regional Forest Agreements that govern Forestry Corporation of NSW logging procedures are meant to provide protection for Threatened Species and their habitat but have not been updated since 1998 and are grossly inadequate”, said Lisa Pfitzner of the resident’s action group.
“It is absolutely ridiculous that unlike the community, the Forestry Corporation of NSW do not have to do a species impact statement,” she said.
Clearing native vegetation is listed in the Biodiversity Conservation Act as a key threatening process.
WIRES CEO Leanne Taylor, said, “Research shows that glider species are especially sensitive to fragmentation, as they rarely cross open ground and may be constrained in gliding by the maximum distance between successive trees”.
The Greater glider is a large gliding marsupial (900-1700g) that feeds exclusively on eucalypt leaves and buds. Adult Greater gliders occupy a relatively small home range with an average size of 1 to 3 hectares (Kavanagh and Wheeler 2004) from which they rarely disperse. (1)
Another population of Greater gliders, in the same Local Government Area of Eurobodalla, is already listed as an ‘Endangered’ population.
“We are also concerned for other species due to the impact of logging such as the collapse of burrows which can crush animals inside such as wombats and reptiles,” said Ms Taylor. Greens Forests Spokesperson, Dawn Walker has called again for an urgent suspension of logging operations in Mogo State Forest, near Batemans Day due to impacts on endangered species and their habitats. “Locals have now found more endangered species in this area of forest. It is alarming that Forestry Corporation has not already surveyed for this species, as the Greater Glider population in the Eurobodalla area has been classed as endangered by the Office of Environment and Heritage since 2007 and the species is highly sensitive to disturbance caused by logging. Continued logging could see it disappear from the region altogether.