While checking nest boxes the other day, we were delighted to find a Brush-tailed Phascogale (or Tuan) curled up in one of the boxes. This particular home-made box has been up for a number of years, and the phascogale is the first known inhabitant.
Phascogales need hollows for shelter and nesting. Due to the large-scale clearing of Victorias Forest, they are now considered Vulnerable. In addition, they were hit hard by the Black Saturday fires, with further losses to tree hollows, ground cover and food sources. We, and others in the district, have also found Sugar Gliders and an antechinus in nest boxes installed after the fires. So it’s encouraging that native mammals are using nest boxes to replace natural hollows.
We have spent many years trying to restore wildlife habitat on our 40ha property through planting local species, natural regeneration and fencing off remnant vegetation and dams. We know these measures have significantly increased birdlife on the property, and now we can confirm that smaller arboreal mammals are also benefiting. So, revegetation certainly can be shown to improve biodiversity !!
These photos were taken as part of the ‘Focus on Fauna’ fire recovery program. Check out the link to their blog for more details.
Note from Phil: If anyone out there has any other observations of interest feel free to email them in for posting