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Petaurus australis

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA DIPROTODONTIA PETAURIDAE

Scientific Name: Petaurus australis
Species Authority: Shaw, 1791
Common Name(s):
English Yellow-bellied Glider

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Menkhorst, P., Winter, J., Ellis, M., Denny, M., Burnett, S. & Lunney, D.
Reviewer(s): Lamoreux, J. & Hilton-Taylor, C. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, presumed large population, occurrence in a number of protected areas, and because it is unlikely to be declining at nearly the rate required to qualify for listing in a threatened category.
History:
1996 Lower Risk/near threatened (Baillie and Groombridge 1996)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The Yellow-bellied Glider is endemic to eastern Australia, where it occurs from the Mount Windsor tablelands (Queensland) in the north to the Victoria/ South Australia border (Goldingay 2008).
Countries:
Native:
Australia
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It can be a common species, but it is patchily distributed.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species inhabits wet sclerophyll, open coastal, and foothill forests. When not in their tree-hollow dens, Yellow-bellied Gliders spend about 90 percent of their time foraging (Goldingay 2008). Individuals of this species require unusually large areas of habitat. This species is particularly noted for feeding on eucalyptus sap, and sap trees are well marked and routinely visited by the gliders (Goldingay 2008). Females typically give birth to a single young annually (Goldingay 2008).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Habitat loss and fragmentation due to timber-harvesting and agriculture are the main threats to this species. Due to past forest management there is a current dearth of available live hollow-bearing trees within Yellow-Bellied Glider habitats. Remaining dead trees are therefore an important resource, but these are at risk of collapse due to regular prescribed burning regimes and windthrow. In Queensland and New South Wales (and possibly Victoria) broad-scale land clearing has been stopped due to newly introduced vegetation management legislation. However, degradation to existing habitat (e.g., through fire, timber removal) within the habitat of isolated populations, but also between non-isolated populations, is a huge threat to the species (essentially inducing a fragmentation effect) throughout its range, due to its wide-ranging and extensive habitat requirements (T. Eyre pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is present in a number of protected areas. Management of timber such that large areas of intact, contiguous forest remain is important for this species. Currently sap trees must be identified and preserved, but the effectiveness of this measure is uncertain (Goldingay 2008). Timber-harvesting and fire management should be aimed at maintaining tree-hollows.

Citation: Menkhorst, P., Winter, J., Ellis, M., Denny, M., Burnett, S. & Lunney, D. 2008. Petaurus australis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 23 November 2014.
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