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Landholders help reverse the decline of koalas in the Central Tablelands

Central Tablelands Local Land Services is working with landholders to reverse the decline of our local koala population through replanting, enhancing and protecting koala habitat.

The Central Tablelands Koala Project is providing funding and assistance to landholders willing to revegetate, repair and protect bushland in areas where koalas colonies can be found. The project also works with people whose land provides links to core koala habitat to ensure these connecting corridors are preserved.

Since February this year, Central Tablelands Local Land Services has funded 10 hectares of revegetation to restore koala feed trees, along with 30 hectares of vital blackberry control.

“Koalas are at their most vulnerable when they are on the ground, and blackberry can create an additional barrier which makes it harder for them to move to the next tree,” explained Clare Kerr, Senior Land Services Officer.

“Spraying and removal of the weed is very important in core habitat to help reduce the time koalas spend on the ground, as that’s when they are exposed to predators such as wild and domestic dogs.”

As well as revegetation work and blackberry control, Central Tablelands Local Land Services has helped landholders across four properties to protect and improve the quality of a further 156 hectares of bushland that is used by koalas. Additionally work has been done to create 10 hectares of buffer vegetation to encourage natural regeneration.

“Habitat loss remains one of the biggest threats to Koalas across the state. By expanding and protecting existing habitat we are doing our part to help reverse the decline of the koala in NSW,” said Clare.

“Another issue we are facing is that while koalas are frequently seen across the region, very few sightings have been officially recorded in the past decade. This makes it hard to justify and attract funding to continue conservation work”.

“If you have seen koalas on your property or when travelling around the region you can help by recording sightings on the NSW BioNet website,” urged Clare.

Adding records to the NSW BioNet database (bionet.nsw.gov.au) is a simple process which will help ensure the Central Tablelands region is recognised as an important area for Koalas in the NSW Koala Strategy being developed by the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage.

Funding for the Central Tablelands Koala Project has been provided through the National Landcare Programme via the regional Targeted Ecosystems Project.

If you have koalas on your property and are interested in a project to improve or increase habitat please contact Colleen Farrow, Targeted Ecosystem Project Manager, on 02 6363 7874.