Looking out for Leady – let’s listen to the science

“All I want, is a place to call home…. Please don’t take my tree away, it’s the only place I can live” said the Leadbeater’s possum to musician Danny Knox who represented the plight of this icon of Victoria’s forests in a lovely little ditty. Leady has a lot of good friends that listen to science and who are working hard for Leady’s conservation. But not everyone listens…..

One of the good friends is Lindenmayer. Leady and he go waaaaay back. Lindenmayer and his team have been keeping a close eye on Leady for decades, and despite best efforts, things just keep getting worse for little Leady.

There are heaps of general articles written about this major conservation issue (better than I’m going to write it here). Any quick Google will find this, this and this. It’s been a long road, and there’s some really great proactive groups out there.

In the end it’s just really frustrating because the science is in; we know what’s leading to Leady’s decline and we know what is needed to lower Leady’s risk of extinction. In it’s most shortest form; clearfell logging and higher risk of fire in the landscape does not a good home make for Leady. So what’s standing in the way?? How about a Great Forest National Park already??

For the actual science of this story you should definitely read the paper and contact the authors if you have any questions.

Lindenmayer DB, Blair D, McBurney L and Banks SC (2015) Ignoring the science in failing to conserve a faunal icon – major political, policy and management problems in preventing the extinction of Leadbeater’s possumPacific Conservation Biology 21, 257-265.

K!E#8 By Luke S. O’Loughlin


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