September is Save the Koala Month so Gympie’s Koala Action Group (KAG) is running a community awareness campaign letting people know that koalas are much more active at this time of year and in greater danger as a result.
During koala breeding season, generally from August to February, young male koalas just entering maturity are being displaced by the dominant older male koalas. The young males may have to travel long distances on the ground and move around waiting for a place to become available in a new breeding group. All this activity places koalas at higher risk of dog attack and vehicle strike.
Sadly, in recent weeks, there have been increasing numbers of male koalas hit and killed by cars near koala habitat on the Mary Valley Highway and on the Tin Can Bay Rd and Priddy Rd Kia Ora. We are asking all motorists to slow down in these and all koala habitat areas, particularly from dusk until dawn when the koalas are most active, and watch the road side for wildlife movement.
Another male koala recently found at Kings Conservation Park at the Palms was killed by dog attack. Because of the koala activity at this time of year, the risk from dog attack is huge, so people need to be extra careful that dogs are contained, and never allowed to roam off lead, especially in bushland.
Over the past couple of years, the Gympie KAG has collected over 450 koala sighting records from the community throughout the Gympie region and beyond, helping to establish a comprehensive map of where our koalas are located. This information really does help in targeting efforts to reduce risks and increase local awareness. Click on the link to access the latest map of the Gympie region showing the koala sighting data.
For more information, visit the Koala Action Group’s webpage at www.mrccc.org.au/koala-action-group ,send an email to koalas@mrccc , commenting on our Facebook, or call Coordinator Michelle Daly on 0437 549 252 or 5483 5242
Tips to help our local koala populations:
- Ensure domestic dogs are contained and do not roam.
- Slow down when driving in koala habitat between dusk and dawn
- Have a wildlife rescue/advice number in your phone. ( ANARRA 5484 9111)
- Check and report all dead koalas
Koala images courtesy of Annie at Widgee and Kewin’s at Glastonbury