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Tree Hollows - Homes for Wildlife

How do tree hollows form?


Tree hollows form in the trunk or branches of live or dead trees, and usually are found in much older trees, typically 100-150 years old.

Because they take so long to form, and are so important as habitat for many of our native animal species, it is very important that they are retained wherever possible.

Hollows form as a result of limbs being broken off in the wind, lightning strike, fire or after attack by termites, other insects or fungi. They can be large or small – 18-30 cm or 2-6 cm respectively.

Why are habitat trees important?

Many arboreal animals utilise tree hollows as permanent homes or nesting sites, including owls, microbats, cockatoos, and possums. Examples of animals that use hollows in our shire include Glossy Black Cockatoos, Powerful Owls, Sugar Gliders, Squirrel Gliders, Kookaburras and the Eastern False Pipistrelle (microbat).


How can we help keep tree hollows?

When undertaking developments or landscaping, efforts should be made to avoid and protect all trees with hollows including dead standing trees (stags) wherever possible. An arborist can assist to ensure these are kept in a safe condition. Additionally, young trees are needed to develop into trees that will form future hollows for animals.

In areas where natural tree hollows are scarce, nest boxes can be used as artificial hollows for many hollow-dependent fauna species. Artificial hollows may be created by an arborist as opportunities arise. Whilst nest boxes can increase habitat for many fauna species, they should not be considered a replacement for natural tree hollows.

For more information on nest boxes visit:

linkBirds in Backyards Nest Box Plans (external link)

Build Your Own Nest BoxBuild Your Own Nest Box (PDF, 1.35MB)


Last Updated: June 22nd, 2018
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