Saturday, July 16, 2016

Our New Highway Section / Wildlife Protection

I have mentioned in previous posts that the major highway at the end of our road was going through a $21m reconstruction with the removal of a dangerous curve and the building of a new 100 year flood bridge.
After eighteen months, of what turned out to be minor disruption, work is virtually complete. It makes the section a lot safer and, even better, we now have a dedicated turn off lane onto our road.
We were puzzled by some strange looking structures that were included in the work.
All has now been revealed thanks to some investigative reporting by Jessica McInerney from of our local paper the Milton Ulladulla Times.
Our valley is surrounded by national park which the highway runs through. As part of the upgrade, fauna crossings have been built to provide safe passage for wildlife.
A fauna underpass at the northern end of the project has been designed to provide a safe crossing for kangaroos, wallabies, bandicoots and echidnas.
A fauna fence has been built on both sides to funnel the animals towards the underpass.
Photos: Jessica McInerney (MUT)

Two canopy rope bridges and several glider poles have been installed to connect either side of the road.
Research has shown these bridges band poles have been successful in helping animals including the yellow-bellied and squirrel gliders safely cross other major highways.
Photos: Jessica McInerney (MUT)

Eighty six nest boxes have been installed to compensate for the loss of 36 trees during the construction.
These are designed to provide potential habitat for some species including microbats, gliders, possums and birds and will be monitored for five years.
Photo: Jessica McInerney (MUT)

Glider experts from the Southern Cross University were engaged throughout the project to advise on the design, location and height of the canopy rope bridges and glider poles.
Nice to see that the fury and not so fury are being looked after although it is a pity the foxes and rabbits will also be able to take advantage.
We see plenty of roadkill on a daily basis around this way so any reduction is welcome.

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