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FAIRY POSSUM

 READ BY BOJANA NOVAKOVIC

Season 1   |  7 min

Feeorin runs away from home to live in the branches and discovers that her love for dance can guide her back home to the treetops.

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BOJANA NOVAKOVIC

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Bojana Novakovic is a Serbian-Australian actress, photographer and activist. She is best known for her role as Det. Lizzie Needham on CBS's drama television series Instinct starring alongside Alan Cumming. Other TV credits include Westworld, Shameless and most recently Operation Buffalo.

Novakovic's film roles include Drag Me to Hell, Edge of Darkness (AFI Best Actress Nomination), Devil, Generation Um..., The Little Death, I, Tonya, and Birds of Prey. 

 

In between projects, Novakovic stars in The Blind Date Project, which she created. The show has had runs in Sydney, Melbourne, LA, NYC and Edinburgh. Novakovic currently lives and works in Los Angeles.

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The Fairy Possum known also as Leadbeater’s Possum is a critically endangered mammal with a dwindling habitat. Rarely seen, these marsupials are nocturnal, fast-moving, and live within the hollows of large trees.

 

The species is primarily found in small pockets of alpine ash, mountain ash and snow gum forests in the Central Highlands of Victoria, Australia. The Fairy Possum is listed as critically endangered on the IUCN Red List of Species, which lists the conservation status of species at risk across the globe. The hollow-bearing trees in these forests are one of the most fire-prone environments on Earth and are vital for the Fairy Possum’s survival.

 

Population estimates of the Fairy Possum are a challenge to determine due to the elusive nature of this species, but it is clear that the remaining population is very small and declining rapidly towards extinction. Protecting forests from deforestation and commercial logging are seen as the primary ways to help Fairy Possums survive.

Ecosystem assessment of mountain ash forest in the Central Highlands of Victoria, south-eastern Australia. Burns et al. 2014

Gymnobelideus leadbeateri. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Woinarski, J. & Burbidge, A.A. 2016

Spatial and temporal dynamics of habitat availability and stability for a critically endangered arboreal marsupial: implications for conservation planning in a fire-prone landscape. Nitzchke et al. 2020

how can we help?

The most effective ways we can help this unique possum is by raising awareness about its conservation status and supporting research and breeding programs. Locally, Zoos Victoria advises against using timber and paper products from important forest habitats and using recycled papers where possible, including toilet paper!

 

For more information on how and where you can contribute, please visit www.zoo.org.au/fighting-extinction/local-threatened-species/leadbeaters-possum-lowland-population.