Media release: CITIZEN SCIENCE SPOTLIGHT ON TALLAROOK FOREST

28 April 2022 Wildlife surveys in the Tallarook Forest have attracted more than 60 locals and visitors to get out and enjoy our area’s natural wonders, by taking part in weekend night walks to spotlight and count endangered animals.


These ‘citizen science’ surveys, undertaken over recent weeks by volunteers with BEAM Mitchell Environment Group, show our local forest is home to the threatened greater gliders, powerful owls, and sooty owls. More common but equally delightful koalas, brushtail possums, ringtail possums and sugar gliders have been found roaming the tree tops at night.


Most of these creatures are nocturnal, so volunteers are taking torches and hitting the forest

walking trails at night, to see these animals when they’re active.


By documenting in video and GPS the presence of key species like the greater glider, this

community effort will enhance knowledge of the forest and it will help protect it from plans to log the area.


The Save the Tallarook Forest campaign (part of BEAM Mitchell Environment Group), was

started by local residents in response to plans by state government agency VicForests to target the Tallarook Ranges for future logging.


“By submitting our sightings of greater gliders to the Office of Conservation Regulator, VicForests are obliged to protect the glider habitat from logging. Since the greater glider surveys started in 2020, over 130 of these gliders have been recorded in the Tallarook Forest,” said BEAM President Peter Lockyer.


“The huge turnout of these volunteers over the past weeks shows that our community really

values the beauty of the Tallarook Forest, as a place to enjoy nature right here in our backyard.


“It’s an island of forest, surrounded by farmland, and we don’t want to see it wrecked by logging when it’s got more value left standing.


“Let’s leave it there for carbon storage, wildlife habitat, bee-keeping, recreation and camping. It’s a home for native animals and birds, unique local plants and insect life.”


"We welcome Mitchell Shire locals or any friends from further afield to hop on the BEAM website and sign up to our wildlife survey walks, to take community action for

nature.”


“Together we can leave our local environment in good shape for future generations."


ENDS


Media contact: Peter Lockyer, President - BEAM Mitchell Environment Group, mob. 0407 935400


Media release - Citizen science spotlight on Tallarook Forest
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