Securing the future for low Leadbeater possum

In December of 2021, Yarra4Life submitted a grant allocation for the project Securing a future for lowland Leadbeater’s Possum to the Environmental Restoration Fund – Threatened Species Plan Grants. The application was successful in receiving funding to secure an adequate supply of both locally sourced and climate adjusted seed to meet habitat needs for Leadbeater’s Possum. 

This project is going to be implemented at the Upper Yarra Valley Treatment plant between 2022 – March 2023 as a high priority location for habitat restoration for lowland Leadbeater’s Possum.

Yarra4Life will coordinate and deliver the project in partnership with Yarra Valley Water, Zoos Victoria, Friends of the Leadbeater’s Possum, Friends of the Helmeted Honeyeater, Greening Australia, Wurundjeri and Parks Victoria. 

The project will initiate works at the site through volunteers planting days at an approximately 4ha area.  This area includes a previously planted area that requires some in-fill planting to improve the habitat quality as well as revegetation of grassy corridors to fill gaps in connectivity of vegetation. Approximately 0.6 ha of new habitat will be planted and the quality of habitat improved across 1.8 ha through infill planting. 

Climate change is already impacting ecosystems across the country, with Leadbeater’s Possum being reliant on cold wet environments we need to act now to support his species to adapt to the changing conditions. Climate-adjusted provenance is one tool that we have to increase the resilience of vegetation in a changing climate. 

Locally sourced seeds from at least 5 species that meet the specific habitat requirements of the lowland Leadbeater’s Possum, will be collected by dedicated volunteer seed collectors from the Friends of the Helmeted Honeyeater.