On Thursday 12th May 2016, an arborist (Treetec Arboriculture & Ecology, cut chainsaw hollows into trees at the reserve to provide habitat for gliders and microbats, and to collect data on the usage of hollows as part of a Latobe University research project.

Fourteen (14) glider hollows were cut, and about forty (40) bat cavities cut. The following photos show the making of a glider hollow.

chainsaw hollow   

chainsaw hollow   

chainsaw hollow

chainsaw hollow   

chainsaw hollow   

chainsaw hollow

chainsaw hollow   

chainsaw hollow   
glider hollow and bat cavity below-right
chainsaw hollow   
Hollow 18 months later

Photos: Steve Griffiths.
Read the Fairfax (The Age & Sydney Morning Herald) article on the chainsaw hollows.
the full paper of the chainsaw hollows research
and the updated paper (2021) on the research
A recent camera survey (January 2017) of the hollows captured a sugar glider...

sugar glider

and a rosella looking for a home...


12 May 2017 - Kristin checked the chain saw hollows with a pole mounted camera and found a sugar glider in a tree hollow within the billabong floor...

sugar glider

17 September 2018 - A chain saw hollows check found a rat (bush rat?) in a tree hollow in the western woodland...

bush? rat

30 October 2019 - Chainsaw hollow check; sugar glider found in 1 hollow, some lorikeet feathers in another couple.


nest box nest box When I decided to install nest boxes, I checked around on the web for designs, and taking into consideration my observations of the batboxes at Wilson reserve, came up with the following variations to the standard designs...

The lid is covered with plastic 'dampcourse' ('Plascourse' is one brand) which acts as a hinge, waterproofs the lid and top of the box, and forms an 'anti-mynah' flap - and is cheaper than hinges! I used button head screws to attach the dampcourse to the lid and backplate.

Because the plastic is not as rigid as a hinge, the lid needs to have some way of keeping it in the correct position; I have used a small screw under the lid which fits inside the box front - an alternative would be a piece of wood that fits neatly inside the box top.

A hint that I picked up on another website is to drill a hole in the top of the back plate for a bullet head nail. Hammer a bullet head nail into the tree at the height you want the box, and then hang the box on the nail while you fasten it to the tree with whatever method you have chosen. I used 75mm screws for fastening. It makes the job much easier and safer.

Five sugar glider boxes and one small parrot box have been installed.

I will update in a few months time.

Stanley Barker
25 September 2013

Update - 26 January 2014.
The nest boxes have only been used by Gould's wattled bats so far, with an unbanded male in the parrot box in December and bat droppings in a glider box.


native bee roost I had noticed some native bees around the reserve, so I checked around on the web for information. After looking at a number of designs, came up with a capped 90mm PVC pipe filled with plastic drinking straws. Two tubes have been installed on different trees on 25 January 2014. I also plan on a wooden roost with hollows 200 - 300mm long and varying between 4 and 10 mm in diameter.

SB - 26 January 2014