Logging operations in some forests along the South Coast badly affected by the Black Summer bushfires are set to recommence.
The move to restart logging in the Shallow Crossing area, north of Batemans Bay, has angered environmental advocates, who have said habitats were still recovering more than 12 months after the devastating blazes.
Warnings have also been made about the status of endangered animal species that are known to live in hollow trees in the area, such as the vulnerable greater glider.
Timber harvesting operations in the Shallow Crossing State Forest are set to start again in a matter of weeks.
However, an exact date has yet to be set down due logging being dependent on weather conditions and crew numbers.
Australian Conservation Foundation lead environmental investigator Annica Schoo said recent monitoring operations in the state forest revealed rapidly declining numbers of the greater glider species in the area.
"It's been really concerning, because the greater glider was only listed as vulnerable in recent years and we're seeing a pretty rapid decline in their numbers," Ms Schoo said.
"Numbers have been taking a dive because they live primarily in hollow-bearing trees, and those trees need about 100 years to get to that level of maturity. The bush needs to be left alone, and advice has been that it could take 120 years for forests in NSW impacted by the bushfires to recover."
Greater gliders had previously been reported as living in the area before the Black Summer fires hit the South Coast.
Following the devastation caused by the natural disaster, the gliders had yet to move back in to Shallow Crossing, with monitoring efforts undertaken recently only finding one, which was dead.
Ms Schoo said the recommencement of logging in the forest would only lead to a further deterrence for the vulnerable species to return to their former habitat.
"It defies logic that anyone should be going in there and cutting down homes for the remaining creatures," she said.
The greater glider is Australia's largest gliding mammal and are predominantly found along the east coast.
A spokesman for the NSW Forestry Corporation, which oversees logging operations in state forests, said harvesting operations had been dramatically reduced along the South Coast since the fires.
"Before every renewable timber harvesting operation takes place, surveys are conducted by highly trained ecologists to ensure the right protections are in place under the coastal integrated forestry operations approval," the spokesman said.
"We are also employing additional environmental safeguards for the operation in Shallow Crossing and all operations currently under way on the South Coast and Eden areas."
The corporation said it aimed to strike a balance between protecting the environment while also support parts of the South Coast reliant on the timber industry.
The Forestry Corporation is mandated to notify the NSW Environment Protection Authority at least two days before logging works can start in the area.
An authority spokesman said it was increasing oversight of logging works following the fires.
"The EPA is taking a comprehensive regulatory approach to manage the environmental impacts of logging in burnt forest areas impacted by the 2019-20 bushfires," the spokesman said.
"The environmental rules for how forestry operations should be carried out set out the requirements to protect native animals, plants, important habitat and ecosystems during harvesting."
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