Give the gift of winter flowers to Glenrock's gliders

The NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) is calling for volunteers to help threatened Squirrel Gliders by joining a community habitat planting day in Glenrock State Conservation Area (SCA) this weekend on World Environment Day, Saturday 5 June.

Squirrel glider (Petaurus norfolcensis)

NPWS Bush Regeneration and Volunteer Officer Boyd Carney said the purpose of the planting day, which is part of the NSW Government Saving our Species program, is to provide winter food for the population of threatened Squirrel Gliders that call Glenrock SCA home. 

“With their big bushy tails and distinctive ’wings’ of skin between their front and hind legs which enable them to glide through the air, Squirrel Gliders are a well-loved resident in Glenrock SCA,” said Mr Carney.

“Sadly, these little guys are listed as vulnerable to extinction in NSW.

“Glenrock is an example of how important urban bushland is for native plants and animals.

“In 2019, with the help of 75 volunteers, including local mountain bike riders, more than 3000 food and habitat trees were planted in Glenrock.

“These young trees survived a very tough, dry summer in 2019-2020, and with the recent rains, they are really starting to power along.

“We’re asking this year’s volunteers to help us maintain these planted areas. This means removing weeds, replacing any plants that have been lost and planting an additional 2000 winter forage trees and shrubs.

“These trees will ensure the Squirrel Gliders have a secure source of food and nesting hollows into the future,” said Mr Carney.

Associate Professor and Conservation Biologist at the University of Newcastle John Clulow said restoring high-quality habitat in Glenrock SCA will make a huge difference for the future of the gliders.

“We’ve been studying gliders in and around Glenrock SCA for several years. By planting autumn- and winter-flowering species, including coastal banksias and swamp mahoganies, we can ensure that the gliders and other nectar-eating animals have access to food resources during what is otherwise a lean time for year for these species,” said Professor Clulow.

The Community Planting Day will take place on Saturday 5 June.

Volunteers can register for the morning (9:00-11:30am) or afternoon (12:30 to 2:00pm) session via the NPWS Volunteer Information Portal (VIP).

This activity is supported by Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA).