Working together to conserve Wollondilly’s Growing Koala Population
Posted on: 28.02.2017
Wollondilly Councils Koala Conservation Project is set to grow this year thanks to funding from the NSW Government. Council are working in partnership with The Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH), Conservation Volunteers Australia and the local community to expand the project with a grant from the Saving Our Species Program.
The future of this well-loved species is much brighter with $90,000 being injected to undertake surveys for koalas and to find out more about their habitat. This project will increase our knowledge base so that we can better manage their the long term conservation. Through this partnership up to 100 koala spotlighting surveys will be conducted and GPS tracking collars fitted on 8 koalas.
Michael Malone, Wollondilly Shire Council’s Director of Environment and Infrastructure, said “There are well-known koala populations in the Campbelltown region which are expanding into the Wollondilly Shire. Findings from a recent survey undertaken in Appin, Douglas Park and Wilton have revealed that there are a number of breeding female koalas in the area. This is a clear sign that there is a healthy growing colony of koalas within the Shire.”
“The response of the community to the Wollondilly Koala Hotline has been critical to the project. In the 2 years since it was set up Council has received reports of more than 40 sightings. Koalas have been reported in areas where they have not been seen for many years and in areas where we thought they did not occur.”
As a result of these reports the spotlighting surveys will expand into other parts of the Shire, including Pheasants Nest, Bargo, Lakesland, The Oaks, Silverdale and Warragamba.
Luke Johnson, Wollondilly Shire Council’s General Manager said, “Koalas are an integral part of Wollondilly’s natural heritage that we need to conserve them for future generations. We are looking forward to working with the Office of Environment Heritage and the local community to better understand how and where this iconic species lives.”
“Council would like to thank the NSW Environment Minister, Gabrielle Upton and the ‘Saving Our Species’ Program for the funding.”
To report sighting of koalas within Wollondilly Shire call the Koala Hotline on 4677 1100.
For more information visit Council’s Koala Conservation webpage or contact the Environmental Education Officer on 4677 1122.