Squirrel gliders on Nail Can Hill

Nest box monitoring by volunteers

There is very little survey data on native animal populations, especially small mammals on Nail Can Hill, in the South West Slopes bioregion.  

Friends of Nail Can Hill, decided to find out for themselves what fauna actually lives on the hill, starting with Squirrel gliders, A species considered 'vulnerable' in NSW.

In 2020, Friends of Nail Can Hill successfully received a grant, auspiced by Parklands Albury Wodonga (Parklands), to install 120 nest boxes on Nail Can Hill. Wodonga Men’s Shed built boxes to attract Squirrel gliders (Petaurus norfolcensis) and Parklands did the installation. Volunteers from Friends of Nail Can Hill worked closely with Parklands Albury Wodonga, the Albury Local Landcare Coordinator and the land managers AlburyCity and Crown Lands to deliver the project.

Outcomes of the project

* 120 nest boxes are now labelled, installed, mapped, monitored and occupied.

* Squirrel gliders were using the new boxes within a month of installation at a variety of sites across the hill.

* Successful breeding is also occurring.

* A community event launched the citizen science volunteer monitoring aspect of the project just before COVID hit in March 2020.

* Volunteers are trained to use the pole camera for safe, non-invasive monitoring, online forms for data entry, and how to use citizen science apps.

* Monitoring continues two times per year by the volunteers with support from the Albury Local Landcare Coordinator. The results reported to the community and support organisations and ecologists.

Flow on benefits * Spotlight nights and awareness activities have proven popular with a wide audience.

* New volunteer members for Friends of Nail Can Hill

* May 2023 monitoring results - Whilst nest boxes facilitate community engagement and absence/presence data they are not a substitute for hollow-bearing trees.

This project was completed in partnership with Parklands Albury Wodonga, Albury City Council and Petaurus Education Group Inc.