Updated: Aug 9, 2021
The forests of northeast Tasmania are like nowhere else on earth, containing glacial refugia stands of ancient forests with biodiversity that survived the last ice age, and are a direct link with our botanical history linking back to the time of the Gondwana super continent. It is these same forests that have some of our last recordings of the Tasmanian tiger (Thylacine) recorded in the wild in the forests around the Krushka’s MTB trail in the Derby hills, scheduled for logging in the coming months.
Looking on the Tasmanian government website The List of Rare, Threatened and Endangered (RTE) species these forests, now listed as logging coupes, it is filled with recordings of Tasmanian devil, Masked Owl, Tasmanian wedge tail eagles’ nests and the endemic Simson’s stag beetle. And a notable historical sighting of the Tasmanian tiger (Thylacine) right in the middle of a forests now listed as CC119A by government business enterprise, Sustainable Timbers Tasmania (STT).
The logging of our last stands of Gondwanic remnant forests are sending our unique native species the same way as the Tasmanian tiger that once roamed these hills. Derby based community campaign organization Blue Derby Wild are conducting ongoing fauna surveys through these forests with the support of research institutions, and with each area logged we re noticing a rapid reduction in the native animals we once found with ease on our remote fauna camera traps.
Blue Derby Wild have been seeking information from STT regarding logging plans and schedules for these forests, and a meeting, though have received no information or willingness to meet on these issues. While STT continues to fail to do the flora and fauna surveys for these unique forests the community continue to fill the gap. These forests of black peppermint, eucalyptus regnan, euc obliqua and rainforest understorey are an increasingly threatened habitat in Tasmania. Not to mention one of our most important terrestrial nature-based solutions to climate change and halting biodiversity loss.
The forests around Derby are proving themselves a nature-based tourism drawcard brining more benefit to our community than industrial logging, and burning of these landscapes ever have. It’s time for the government to match the Brand Tasmania spin put to the Blue Derby story, and protect the places that have created an international attraction that is worth so much more standing.