A dead koala has been found between fallen trees in a logged forest that the Andrews government could have protected – had it not ignored advice from its own scientific committee.
The Sunday Age has obtained graphic images of the lifeless animal slumped over branches in the Acheron Valley north of Warburton, in a confronting example of the potential impact of logging in Victoria.
Those who know the greater glider have a vivid way of describing it: like a flying possum crossed with a koala. About the size of a garden-variety possum, but with a looped tail up to 60 centimetres long and membranes that extend from its elbow to its ankle, it is Australia's largest gliding marsupial.
Scientists say it may not continue to be: it is headed for extinction. Two decades ago, greater gliders were abundant up the east coast, but a combination of land-clearing, logging and the rising threat of bushfires linked to climate change has triggered an 80 per cent population crash.
The greater glider is headed for extinction. Photo: Pavel German
VicForests has been caught out using very dodgy arithmetic to blame the small endangered Leadbeaters possum for its predicament. These were presented to the VEAC investigation and the Parliamentary enquiry as kosher - and too complicated for the average Joe to understand. But their bamboozling tactics didn't fool Greens MP Samantha Dunn. VicForests is exposed as crooked managers yet again.
Forests are not a Magic Pudding and this fact finally caught up with the government and VicForests in January 2017. Knocking down forests faster than they can regrow has been the management standard for decades by every logging agency and overseen and excused by every government (Liberal and Labor). After such cut-throat management, the industry and workers are now screaming that their throats have been cut because the limit has been reached; forests can no longer provide the sawlogs demanded.