Parklands Rangers regularly check nestboxes in the environmental lands that we manage. Perhaps due to the combination of drought and extreme heat over the summer, we have only found only one third of the number of Squirrel Gliders compared to the same time in autumn 2019.
Landholders involved with the Burrumbuttock LAMP project observed gliders overheating in the uninsulated nestboxes during this very hot summer. We believe that a natural hollow has far better insulation qualities than a marine plywood nestbox. As a result, we are calling for the donation of hollow sections found by anyone cutting fallen timber for firewood this season. These will be re-purposed and installed in trees as natural hollows. Please do not collect hollows that have been on the ground for some time already – it is likely that these are already providing habitat for ground level species.
The attached photo is of a single nestbox on Bears Hill that somehow survived the January 2020 bushfire. Unfortunately the loss of all habitat, especially Silver Wattle and Eucalypts since January 2020 had meant that any surviving gliders on Bears Hill have moved on due to the lack of food. Please consider the hardship to native mammals when planning your garden this year especially; keep mature native trees if you have them and plant nectar bearing native shrubs to provide food wherever you can.
Please contact us if you can help: firstname.lastname@example.org