Shoalhaven City Council says it will start clearing vegetation along Gerroa Road today, a section of road that includes the famed ‘‘bum tree’’.
At the same time the Gerroa Environmental Protection Society intends to hold a roadside vigil at the Beach Road intersection at Seven Mile Beach in an attempt to save what they say may be the only remaining colony of greater gliders and to protest against the removal of the 400-year-old habitat trees along the road.
More than 900 people have signed a Save the Bum Tree petition.
GEPS spokesman Howard Jones said two large banners of glider possums would be unfurled when clearing was due to begin.
‘‘A roadside vigil will remain in place at the site for as long as possible to highlight the probable demise of these beautiful greater gliders and the ill informed decision by Shoalhaven council to remove their habitat,’’ Mr Jones said.
The council said the works, which were being undertaken to increase the safety of the road, would take place along Gerroa Road between the turn-off to Shoalhaven Heads to the south and the Shoalhaven and Kiama council border in the north.
Shoalhaven council’s assets and works director Ben Stewart said a number of measures to minimise impact on the local environment had been identified as a result of continuing engagement with the National Parks and Wildlife Service.
The project will involve the clearing of vegetation within the road reserve up to six metres from the edge of the road and the construction of wider shoulders.