The Miena cider gum (Eucalyptus gunnii subsp. divaricata) is an iconic tree that is endemic to Tasmania’s central plateau where it mostly grows on the edges of frost hollows.
It is extremely frost resistant and produces a sweet cider-like sap which ferments in contact with natural yeasts in the air to produce an alcoholic drink. The cider gums are of great cultural significance to the Tasmanian Aboriginal people who call the cider ‘wayalinah’
The Miena Cider Gum is listed as endangered under Commonwealth and State threatened species legislation. The main threats are over browsing by possums, insect attack and inappropriate fire regimes which are all being exacerbated by the overarching issue of climate change. These factors combined are responsible for the severe declines observed in the species over the last 20 years
We are working with land managers to band, cage and fence key stands of the Miena cider gums to protect them from over browsing, allowing the trees to be more resilient to drought and insect attack. We have also developed fire management plans for key landholders that focus on planned burning programs to protect the best stand
Another focus of the conservation project is to collect seed from each subpopulation as insurance against extinction. The seed is stored with the Tasmanian Seed Conservation Centre, which is part of the Millennium Seedbank Project at Kew Gardens, England.
Our partners include a wide range of industry, NGOs, government and community organisations collaborating to make a difference on the ground