Enhancing Habitat Update

140 of our nest boxes are up in trees on Land for Wildlife properties from Darwin to Katherine! They are hoping to attract our Black-footed Tree-rats and food plants for them are also being planted on each nest box property.

After our fantastic workshops, members have been busy painting and installing the boxes. Boxes have also been installed at 3 schools- Girraween Primary, Howard Springs Primary School and Milkwood Steiner School.

Some members got friends and family together to install the boxes and soem even got a little help from Emma.

Emma (LFW coordinator) even got on the radio to talk about the project…


These are just some of our nest boxes looking fabulous in their gorgeous host trees


And then, the next exciting part has been checking out the boxes with our new especially designed nest box camera, with the help of the landholders and our Green Army team who are learning about surveying.


So far we have not caught any mammals live on camera but we have got Eucalyptus leaf nest material (very likely to be from the Black-footed Tree-rat), droppings that look like those of the Black-footed Tree-rat and some small identified fluff balls (to be sent for analysis).

We have also found some other gatecrashers using the nest boxes, including many geckos, grasshoppers, spiders and European honey bees.

Check out this amazing (non native) bee colony that took up a nest box at Alison and Mike’s property in Humpty Doo, and then moved on.

Bees in nestbox July 2017Nestbox 5 at 135 Jefferis Road small

So no live pictures of our Tree-rat friends but evidence of some and sightings from landholders of BFTRs outside the nest boxes! We are hoping to hear about motion sensing cameras we can lend to our landholders soon and will be checking on the boxes in 3 months time! All the data is being collated as well as a map of the location of every nest box!

Now we will wait and see if anything moves in over the next few months, while our Green Army are busy planting 15, 000 trees for the Black-footed Tree-rat ! (yes 15, 000) on Land for Wildlife Properties.


Volunteers are AMAZING

Thank you to our wonderful Land for Wildlife volunteers and Land for Wildlife members who are volunteers. I also know a lot of our members are wildlife career volunteers and Bushfire volunteers- so THANK YOU

Volunteers- you are fabulous and flora and fauna conservation could not happen without you! Thanks to our wonderful volunteers who were nominated for NT volunteer awards. From L- R. Emma Barret, fabulous student volunteer helping Land for Wildlife every Friday with passion and enthusiasm in 2017, Lyn Gerdes- Land for Wildlife Member and 17 year long Greening Australia volunteer- collecting seed, s See more

 — with Emma BarrettEm Lu Ping Skyand Greening Australia.



Pictured above at the NT volunteering Awards (2017)

If you would like to volunteer with us please get in touch

Back Yard Bird Count in Katherine

The Aussie Backyard Bird count is 23- 29th October this year.

We will be hosting a guided bird watching walk and talk on a very large Land for Wildlife property in Katherine this year. Mick Jerram, local tour guide and manager of the land will be guiding the walk.


Photograph courtesy of Top End Tourism.

Join Mick Jerram of Gecko canoeing on a beautiful Land for Wildlife property for a bird watching walk with one of Katherine’s most experienced wildlife tour guides. Find out more about birds in the Katherine region the Land for Wildlife program. This is part of Aussie Backyard Bird Count (https://aussiebirdcount.org.au/) And YES Gouldian finches have been recorded on the property- you never know!

Directions- Drive towards Nitmiluk Gorge from the stuart highway. 20.3 kms on the right there is a small turn off which will be marked. Map and further directions to be added. PLease park opposite Maude Creek Lodge.

Please bring water, hat and boots/ good foot wear and binoculars. Share cars if possible and tell your friends. The walk is 1 km.

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Mick Jerram on the Land for Wildlife property.

For more information email elupin@greeningaustralia.org.au

And look at all the other events that you can get involved in that weekend –

Landcare in Katherine 2017 (003)


A New Top End Wildlife Book

As we all know Australia’s Top End is home to an amazing array of unique and rare wildlife, and many of Australia’s most iconic National Parks.

A new wildlife book has now been released by the Environment Centre NT.

LAND FOR WILDLIFE DISCOUNT – It usually sells for $60 direct from ECNT. You can purchase it for $55 if you are a Land for Wildlife member!

This is a user-friendly and comprehensive field guide to the animals that live in one of the world’s wildlife hot-spots and the places visitors can go to see them.

Wildlife ECNT Book

The easy-to-use full colour guide features 700 species of wildlife. With over 2000 images this is a photographic showcase of unpresented quality. Every species is illustrated by one to three images, depicting different colour forms, juveniles, in flight etc. Concise, detailed information covers distinguishing features, habitats, and distribution and conservation status.

Watching wildlife, an ever-increasing activity, is made easy with the sections on national parks and protected areas.

A range of experts contribute in depth information on topics of current interest, such as crocodiles and cane toads.

WildWatch- report your wildlife!

If you are living or visiting your “Land for Wildlife” property or out and about and see any unusual wildlife, we would love you to report it to WildWatch- an especially adapted citizen science application to record wildlife sightings!

Anything can be uploaded, but more useful are sightings of species that are listed threatened species, or species becoming less common.

This information helps understand wildlife and its distribution and is really important when it comes to planning and clearing applications. Scientists are of course out and about collecting data, but they cannot be everywhere.

SUBMIT HERE- (click the link or picture) 


Wildwatch page

If you are part of Land for Wildlife’s “Enhancing habitat” nest box program, then we (LFW) will submit anything recording on a nest box survey.

If you would like us to enter a sighting for you that we have a WildWatch account and can do it on your behalf- get in touch

Submit your bird, mammal, reptile and frog records here. All records will be entered into the N.T. Fauna Atlas. Fauna Atlas records can be accessed via NR Maps and the Atlas of Living Australia. Personal datasets of fauna observation can also be submitted to the Fauna Atlas by emailing you data to Biodiversity@nt.gov.au.



DON”T KILL RANDOM RATS!– The photograph below is a Black- footed Tree-rat (Mesembriomys gouldii). A dead one, accidentally killed by a resident in Howard Springs who mistook it for a Rattus rattus (our common introduced pest rat).

BFTR dead

Please pass on the message that before killing rats that you are think are pests- make sure that they are not our natives!

Rat-sack, snap traps and other methods do not discriminate! If you are unsure if you have natives then you can live trap and then re-release if they are.

Keeping pets (in particular dogs and cats) under control and not allowed out at night when these nocturnal animals are out and about eating fruit.

This is a juvenile rat (pictured above), but generally they are larger than our pest rat, with darker ears and black feet and their tail looks like it is dipped in white paint.

These gorgeous creatures are endangered and although seemingly common in the Darwin and rural area they are declining greatly in numbers elsewhere- so let’s look after them!

ENHANCE THEIR HABITAT (like in our member’s program) is always helpful- plan some more of  their favorite native fruit trees, and install nest boxes. In addition to try and retain, or begin to grow old growth trees that can harbor hollows by keeping any uncontrolled and hot fires out of your property and further landscapes.

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Many members and people in the rural area say they often see the Black-footed Tree-rat or that they live in an old car or roof.

If you can positively identify these fantastic rats and have seen them recently- then let everyone know. They are endangered and a lot less common further away from Darwin and the rural area. The more data on them the better.
Similarly any other species of native fauna, such as echidnas, sugar gliders and phascogales can be recorded.

You can upload your sightings of any native fauna species to the NT’s Wildwatch. Your sightings will be recorded in official records and be able to be viewed by others via NR Maps. Check out www.wildwatch.nt.org.au  

If you are in our nest box program and the species are in the nest box we will be submitting this information for you. 

Voluntary Conservation for Top End Native landscapes