You were probably deeply saddened at the news recently that nearly 700 koalas had been euthanased in Cape Otway, by the previous Victorian government.
Ask the new Victorian government to improve its approach to protecting koalas!
The tragic end for these koalas could have been avoided by better management. The high number of koalas in Cape Otway is a direct result of a long series of well-intentioned but ultimately misguided earlier translocations from small islands.
Sadly, this is just one example of how we’re letting down our national icon.
Another koala catastrophe is unfolding in the south west of the state. If not addressed now, it could result in a far worse situation on a much larger scale. Many thousands of koalas inhabit timber plantations there and many are killed or suffer horrific injuries in logging operations.
When the plantations are harvested, these koalas are then left hungry and homeless with nowhere to go.
We need a new approach to koalas in Victoria and across the nation. It’s not just about ensuring that each plantation is logged carefully to protect wildlife.
We desperately need to build a system of secure koala habitats and connectivity between habitats, so that animals can move between areas as logging happens so that they don’t end up marooned.
The new Victorian government is promising a new more transparent approach and a special koala management plan.
Let’s hold them to that promise. We need urgent action to help our national icon.
Thank you so much for your support.
Director, IFAW Oceania
(featured image: “Phascolarctos cinereus (Koala resting in tree fork)”.jpg Licensed under GFDL via Wikimedia Commons)