Media Release Tuesday 8th August 2023
Gliders Galore in Bulga and Dingo State Forests
Record numbers of Greater Gliders have been found by conservationists in Bulga and Dingo State Forests north-west of Taree.
Greater Gliders are now endangered. Their populations were already in decline but many were wiped out in the 2019/20 bushfires.
Nowhere else on the north coast have so many been seen in such a relatively small area. Of all the sightings recorded since the fires these Wingham/Taree forests stand out as a stronghold.
Local conservationists have had a citizen science camp for the last few days, looking particularly for signs of Koalas and for Greater Gliders.
“We’ve seen both as well as a Masked Owl and a Powerful Owl, ” said local conservationist Sharyn O’Dell.
“We’ve seen lots of Koala activity, particularly around the Grey Gums and Tallowwood trees and the Greater Gliders were out in force even with such a bright full moon,”
“We’re really worried about the impending logging. At this time of year the Koalas and the Greater Gliders have their young in the pouch. If these animals are going to have any success in rebuilding their populations, they and their habitat, including the many big old trees that survived the fires, absolutely need to be left in peace.
“One Greater Glider we were able to get some good footage of, we’ve named Jacinda. We’re pretty sure she has young in her pouch. The footage of her belly is clear enough to suggest there is something moving in there.
“We’ve named her for the former New Zealand Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, who managed to go through pregnancy and hold down the top job. Our ‘Jacinda’ similarly has a big job ahead of her. She has to survive for long enough to raise her offspring when the forest where she lives is approved for logging.
“One thing’s for sure, knowing that these gorgeous and defenceless animals are out here has made us committed to doing all we can to save their forest homes and save their lives. It’s downright criminal when there is a climate and biodiversity crisis, that citizens have to defy their governments to protect endangered animals, because deals were done to sell their trees. But defy them we will,” Ms O’Dell said.
Photos below of Greater Gliders and a Koala found in Bulga and Dingo State Forests between Wednesday 2nd and Saturday 5th August