Who after watching this could feel grumpy about a few apples or quinces? How lucky we are to have this beautiful animal adapting its former forest behaviour to live with us. Here I am in the middle of a city of 3 million people and ringtails arrive on the dot of 11pm ready to party. They sleep by day in nests they’ve made around the neighbourhood, eat their own poo (special daytime poo which they need to digest their food) lick their paws, yuk!(two digits forward, two digits behind). Then shove the kids in the pouch if tiny or sling the whole family on the back and told to hang on tight.
Leadbeater’s Possum numbers are estimated to have peaked in the mid-1980s, when approximately 7500 were known in the wild. From then, it’s numbers have declined. Logging has impacted on its habitat and range. Devastatingly, the Black Saturday bushfires of 2009 burned around 45% of its remaining habitat. At Lake Mountain a population of 300 possums was reduced to just two family groups (5 individuals). Late in 2011, 6-7 individuals were being monitored and supplementary fed on the plateau. There is now only an estimated 1500 Leadbeater’s Possums remaining in the wild and it may soon be admitted to the critically endangered list.
Leadbeaters possum (Gymnobelideus leadbeateri) adult Emblem of Victoria
The Denis Naphine government handed over all forest east of the Hume Hwy in Victoria to commercial paper harvesters just days before the election…