Â Monday 24 June 2013 Â Â Â 10am – 3pm
Victorian Supreme Court of Appeal
459 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne
Please come along with Friends of Leadbeater’s Possum to Â support the team at Healesville’s My Environment in their Supreme Court Appeal against VicForests – this could be the ‘end game’ for the future of Victoria’s Faunal Emblem!
Visit: www.myenvironment.net.au Â to learn more about this vital case and consider making a donation towards the fund to fight for the survival of Leadbeater’s Possum!
Leadbeaterâ€™s Possum Awareness Week 2013 – a Great Success!
Picture: JAY TOWN. Copyright.
The inaugural LBP Awareness Week (1-7 April) achieved its aim this year to highlight the current plight of our state faunal emblem. Thanks must go to the hard working FLBP Committee and MyEnvironment staff for pulling together to make the week a success.
MediaÂ from Leadbeater’s Possum Awareness Week
The Herald Sun newspaper (5th April, page 15) took some stunning photos of a captive LBP at Healesville Sanctuary, which will be uploaded to our website soon – thanks to the support of Judy Robertson (Communications Manager at ZoosVic) for facilitating this publicity and obtaining the rights to reproduce the photos. They selected one photo for publication and Sophie Aubrey wrote an informative article about the possums history, the captive breeding program and included our website at the bottom.
Unfortunately it is not online, only available in hard copy.
Picture:Â In the right hands:Â A Leadbeaterâ€™s possum at Healesville Sanctuary which is working to save the species. Picture: JAY TOWN. Copyright.
The Age newspaper on Tuesday 9th April featured an article by their Environment Reporter Tom Arup which focussed on the withdrawal of the proposed changes by DSE to the Forest Code of Practice which would have further impacted on LBPs and other threatened species. You can read the article here…
Cambarville Event for Leadbeater’s Possum Awareness Week
On Saturday 6th April over 50 people gathered at Cambarville Picnic Ground to celebrate the launch of our annual LBP Awareness Week (and the possums rediscovery on 3rd April 1961). We began the afternoon with a short talk from Mr Eric Wilkinson who shared his story of the incredible rediscovery of Leadbeaterâ€™s Possum – including the first photo taken of them in the Central Highlands. His recollections were wonderful to hear and we are looking forward to reading them one day in the near future!
Picture: FLBP President; Pam Miskin, Mr Eric Wilkinson and Cr Sam Dunn.
Australia National University Research Officer Dave Blair (and son Leo!) took us on a fascinating and informative Walk â€˜nâ€™ Talk for a couple of hours through the forests at Cambarville, highlighting the differences in fire severity impact upon the regeneration and the Leadbeaterâ€™s Possums themselves. Dave is employed by Professor David Lindenmayer to monitor the Central Highlands forests and their wildlife as part of his ongoing 30+ year study. It is the longest continual ecological study in the world. He showed us some beautiful 250+ year old mountain ash trees and described how important the hollows and crevices in all trees both living and dead are for the possums.
As we all know these important dead stags when left in logging coupes as habitat trees become victims of the high intensity regeneration burns and disintegrate leaving nothing but charcoal on the ground. Live trees left in the coupes as habitat trees are killed by the 1200â€™C fires and so too are condemned to collapse in the future. No Leadbeaterâ€™s Possums have been found in any areas of 2009 burnt forest – they are extremely sensitive to disturbance – logging and fire.
Picture: Dave Blair leads the enthusiastic group of possum people through the forests.
Unfortunately, despite being told of our event, DSE decided to go ahead and ignite three logging coupes within quite close proximity of Cambarville.
However, the â€˜upsideâ€™ of all that smoke was that a reporter from the UK newspaper The Guardian was there to witness and write about it all! The article on Leadbeater’s Possums was published online on 27 May 2013 – the launch day of the newspaper in Australia!
It was an afternoon filled with enthusiasm for the environment and Leadbeaterâ€™s Possums in particular – but it left a group of like minded Victorians wondering how it has been allowed to come to the point where we are witnessing the rapid slide to extinction of our state emblem… and what it will take to stop that from happening.
YOU CAN HELP LEADBEATERâ€™S POSSUMS NOW!
The AgeÂ article is the first of several stories we will need to prompt Minister Tony Burke to act – he’s moving, but clearly needs the extra impetus. Â EveryoneÂ needs to get to their friends and colleagues to write aÂ letter to The Age. Not just today, keep them flowing from here on. This is how we can put the pressure on the powers that be.
Politicians NEED TO SEE LETTERS!
1. Come out with the recent Victorian government LBP survey findings Ministers Walsh/Smith! This is NOT enough to secure species.
2.Â It has taken DSE 6 months to write survey standards to permit logging and 6 years to review an Action Statement that controls logging – still being stalled.
3.Â Big Tree Crisis, we can’t waste time… old habitat trees are being lost to logging and burning, 150 years before it becomes useful to LBPs. VicForests is destroying 45% of retained habitat of ash forest logging coupes (VicForests AFS Audit 2012)
4.Â Stalling saves Reflex paper’s future but reduces our faunal emblem’s future.
5.Â Not acting is sanctioning extinction! We have 30 years of science to underpin what needs to be done!
6.Â Our forests and wildlife have not been allowed to recuperate since Black Saturday – try and mention the fires.
7.Â Â Loggers have had millions of taxpayers dollars in grants and broad access to these damaged forests. Unchecked they have now OVER-LOGGED the mountain ash forests.
8.Â This matters to the people of Victoria – where is Tony Burke?
9.Â How can this species be allowed to go extinct under the EPBC Act? It means the Regional Forestry Agreements are failing the nation’s forests.
10.Â We need Direct Action on wildlife NOW!
And many more reasons……
You are all creative, just keep the letters going, for weeks if we must. The newspaper editors will appreciate the passion.
ALWAYS make reference to a politician – it is their fault this species is going extinct.
Pick and choose and add your own ideas.
Friends of Leadbeater’s Possum information brochure
Click on the link to open the file: Â Â FLb P flyer Dec 2012, reduced calibri copy
their future is in our hands…
Leadbeater’s Possum is Victoria’s State Faunal emblem. An endangered species with both State and National Recovery Programs in place. Endemic to Victoria, they exist nowhere else but the Central Highlands forests, Yellingbo Nature Conservation ReserveÂ and alpine areas between Lake MountainÂ & Mt. Baw Baw.
Population estimates prior to the 2009 bushfires were around 2,000-2,500 individuals, post-fire estimates are <1,000. Approximately 40-50% of their prime habitat was lost in the fires.
We are Friends of Leadbeater’s Possum Inc.Â Established in 2004 to give a voice to these amazing but elusive forest animals. Leadbeater’s Possum habitat has many impacts ranging from timber harvesting (including salvage logging) to bushfire and bushfire prevention methods like fuel breaks and fuel reduction burning.
Together we hope to be able to help Leadbeater’s survive in the wild by encouraging conservation efforts, research programs and effective conservation strategies and policies.