Friday 24th January 3:00pm - 9:00pm
Friday 24th January 3:00pm - 6:00pm
Plugged at the Pool
So far the bushfires in the Southern Highlands have not reached our best quality koala habitat (e.g. the edge of the water catchment lands and Canyonleigh), but these fires are showing no sign of stopping any time soon and we are not out of the woods yet. Both the Green Wattle Creek Fire and the Morton Fire are burning koala habitat, but it is lower quality habitat than other parts of the Southern Highlands.
Fingers crossed for rain.
The drought is enhancing the bushfire danger and also putting stress on Koalas and eucalypts. Koalas that have been recently taken into rescued in the Southern Highlands have been extremely dehydrated. Drought makes it harder to do successful replanting of koala habitat and we are seeing less natural regeneration of eucalypts.
And again, fingers crossed for rain.
Injured or Distressed Koalas
If you see a koala that is injured or in distress on the ground, then call either:
Wildlife Rescue South Coast Inc on 0418 427 214 or
WIRES on 1300 094 737.
Please make sure you report all your healthy koala sightings to the Southern Highlands Koala Project via facebook, calling 02 4868 0888 or emailing email@example.com.
Protect the Koala Habitat
You can protect the koala habitat on your property by joining the Land for Wildlife program. This is a free program where you get an ecological assessment of your property, variety of maps (including a koala habitat map) and access to $2,000/year grants from the Biodiversity Conservation Trust. All you need is at least 0.5 hectares of bushland and an enthusiasm for wildlife!
Since 2014, the project team has undertaken hundreds of spotlight surveys and habitat assessments throughout the Shire, with official estimates now putting the koala population at over 3,000 individuals, making it the largest koala population in southern NSW and representing around 10% of the total koala population in the State.
In 2018, the project team received a further $450,000 over three years from the NSW Government’s Saving Our Species program, allowing us to continue our valuable work delivering local koala conservation actions, including:
The Southern Highlands Koala Conservation Project was initiated following a major bush fire in October 2013 that burnt over 15,000 hectares of bushland to the north of the Shire. Within days of the fire, Council began receiving reports of koalas appearing in backyards and being struck by vehicles on the Hume Highway. These reports surprised many local residents, including long-serving Council staff, many of whom were unaware of the local presence of koalas.
Recognising there was very limited available information about the Shire's koala population, Council approached the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage's (OEH) Threatened Species team seeking expert advice on how Council might help manage its koalas. It soon became clear that not only was the Southern Highlands home to a significant koala population, but this population had also been largely overlooked in terms of research and conservation efforts.
Following an initial 5-day survey and pilot study funded by Council's Environment Levy, the Southern Highlands Koala Conservation Project was formally established with the overarching goals of providing a clear direction for the long-term conservation of koalas in the Southern Highlands and making this the best understood koala colony in NSW.
If the koala appears injured call Wildlife Rescue South Coast 0418 427 214 or WIRES 4862 1788.
For further information about this project Conservation Project, please contact Council on 4868 0888 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Southern Highlands Koala Conservation Project is proudly supported by the NSW Government's Saving Our Species program and the Wingecarribee Shire Council's Environment Levy.