Help Save Wildlife from Logging!
Wildlife Of The Central Highlands (WOTCH) is a non-for-profit organisation ran entirely by dedicated volunteers. We are based in the Central Highlands of Victoria, which is home to beautiful native Mountain Ash forests, hosting some of the tallest trees in the world.
Unfortunately these forests are being extensively logged by a company known as VicForests, with the logging preceeding at an unsustainable rate of approximately 5,500 hectares every year. Once harvested, the timber is primarily used to produce Reflex office paper, with only a tiny percentage actually used for timber products.
Mountain Ash tree hollows provide crucial habitat for a range of native animals including Sugar Gliders, Feathertail Gliders, Greater Gliders, Sooty Owls, Southern Boobook Owls and the critically endangered Leadbeater's Possum to name a few. These hollows can take hundreds of years to form and are in decline, largely as a result of logging.
At WOTCH, we dedicated countless hours towards protecting these species from the mindless destruction associated with logging. Our volunteers spend endless nights surveying sheduled logging coupes for wildlife, recording and documenting the animals living within the coupes. Our main focus is to locate threatened species within these logging coupes, with a specific focus on locating the critically endangered Leadbeater's Possum. A successful detection of a Leadbeater's Possum accompanied with the appropriate evidence (footage) leads towards the implementation of legal protection around the sighting. A 200m buffer zone (12.5 Hectare) is established around the sighting, meaning that by law this area of forest is no longer allowed to be logged.
Since WOTCH Inc was established in 2014, we have saved approximately 200 Hectares of State Forest, which was sheduled to be logged by VicForests. In order to conduct our faunal surveys we require expensive equipment, such as GPSs, head torches, spotlights, video cameras, infrared technology and thermal imaging cameras.
The money raised from this fundraiser will be 100% contributed towards the protection of these Mountain Ash Forests. The money raised will be distributed towards the maintenance of our current equipment, as well as the purchasing of new equipment. More equipment will allow us to conduct more surveys, cover a greater area and engage with the community more by teaching new volunteers how to conduct these surveys.
Thank you to those who have read this story, and especially to those kind enough to donate to the cause.