Snow Gums face a massive threat from the spread of dieback which is caused by a native beetle – and also super charged by climate change, and localised collapse of snow gum woodlands due to more frequent fires.
Last winter Friends of the Earth (FoE) published An Icon at Risk, which considers the many threats to the mountains of north east Victoria (the report is available here).
FoE will be hosting a field trip to map impacts of fire over four days in January 2022 in the Mt Hotham region.
The Icon at Risk report contains a series of recommendations for state government.
A key recommendation is to carry out an assessment of the ecological viability of Snow Gum communities, to determine whether a targeted intervention is required by the state government (as has been done to protect Alpine Ash communities, which are also struggling to adapt to more frequent fires).
We have been inviting members of the public to send in observations of localised loss of Snow Gums due to more frequent fire – you can find out about this program here.
We are also hosting a 4 day citizen science event in the Mt Hotham area over summer to map areas of localised loss of these forests.
You would be welcome to join us.
We are planning to be in the Mt Hotham area from Thursday January 27 until Sunday January 30. If possible, aim to come up on the Wednesday.
Each day we will go out in small groups to map localised Snow Gum loss in the area around Mt Hotham and the Dargo High Plains.
We will be camping together and there is also an option to stay in a ski lodge at Mt Hotham (for $40 a person per night).
You would need to come self sufficient in terms of food, water, camping gear, and be of reasonable fitness if you want to join the fieldtrips. There is no cost for attending and participants would be covered by FoE’s Public Liability Insurance. We are happy to try and assist with car pooling.
If you are familiar with use of GPS please let me know.
If you’re interested in finding out more, please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
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