Finding a home for a possum

It is frustrating when you go to all the trouble of putting up nest boxes to have them go unused. Is it the position, the way the opening faces or the contents inside? On a recent check of the rainwater tank the strainer was full of a lot of leaf material that hadn’t just washed in. It looks like a possum was furnishing its new home. In the long term it isn’t a sustainable site especially when it rains.  We have moved an unused nest box onto the tank and added the leaf material and hope the possum tries out the new residence soon.


Small but interesting

While flowers are harder to find in the peak of summer there are still a few interesting insects, spiders and other things to photograph. As we come into autumn take some time out to see what is really out in the garden or local bushland.

Keep some twiggy bits

Do you overboard in the garden and tidy up too much? This small eucalypt looks a bit scraggly and could have the twigs removed but during the day there are numerous birds that love this branch as a perching point. They sit there to sing, see what is happening around them or look for insects.

Things that go crunch in the night

Our landcare group cameras are out again in an attempt to capture a glimpse of phascogales as they disperse over summer. The cameras will be out for several weeks so we decided to check that they were positioned correctly and working.

Looking at the photos shows that the camera was bumped and needed to be realigned so I am glad we didn’t leave it too long. In this round the cameras will only record between 8pm and 6am to save the batteries and they only need to work when the phascogales are likely to be out and about.

Guess who was first to check out the peanut butter aroma?

(Note that this monitoring is carried out with the relevant ethics approvals and permits)

a quick sniff

now hold it securely


now for another go

or perhaps a side on attack this time

the tail is an indication that this animal is not a phascogale but a brush-tailed possum


Hollows are important

If you don’t make a lot of noise when you take a walk in the bush you may be rewarded by seeing a bird using a hollow. In this case it was a young Crimson Rosella. Quite a few birds need hollows to raise their young so it was pleasing to see this hollow being checked for size.

Don’t miss the whales at Warrnambool

At this time of year  Logan’s Beach, Warrnambool, is the place to go to see Southern Right Whales. It is where this species of whales comes to each year to calve and this year has been a bumper year. The site is easily accessed by tourists and the whales come in close to the shore.

The best view is gained from overhead, however visitors have to make do with a viewing platform and binoculars.  Last Friday there was a special project underway using unmanned aerial vehicle (drones) photographing the whales.

There is strict legislation controlling activity around whales but Threatened Species Initiative Funding was made available from DELWP, to undertake the photographing of the markings on the new calves. This research required a special permit to be issued to allow the flights over the whales and their calves.

Each Southern Right Whale has its own unique pattern of markings covering the head and once recorded, it makes the tracking of the individuals easier in the future. These whales are listed as Critically Endangered and being able to track them assists in knowing how the population numbers are progressing. Here is a link to more information.

There are also birds and plants to see.