Fundraising target: £2,100 +
Project: to propagate over 3,000 koala food trees to supply to landholders and local restoration groups in the Northern Rivers Region of New South Wales in Australia. This is one of 21 projects nominated for our 21 For 21 programme.
21 For 21 Project Partner: Friends of the Koala
Operating for over 35 years, Friends of the Koala have an established history of working towards positive outcomes for koalas particularly in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, Australia.
About Friends of the Koala
Friends of the Koala is committed to conserving koalas and preserving and enhancing their habitat, particularly in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales.
Alongside maintaining a 24/7 Rescue Hotline, the group operate a Koala Hospital, Native Plant Nursery and Education Centre known as Burribi, the Widjabul word for Koala at their Centre in East Lismore.
Friends of the Koala is largely a volunteer organisation which receives no ongoing Government funding. The group relies heavily on donations and successful grants to fund specific projects and operating costs.
Core activities include:
• rescuing, rehabilitating and releasing koalas
• protecting and enhancing koala habitat
• educating the community about koalas and issues that affect them,
• advocating on behalf of koalas and;
• assisting with relevant research
The greatest threat to the long-term survival of koalas is destruction of their habitat. Many of the remaining belts of eucalypts along traditional koala routes have become severely fragmented or destroyed particularly during the recent bushfires, which increases their susceptibility to disease, motor vehicle accidents and dog attacks. Koalas are under greater stress because food is harder to find and they spend more time on the ground as trees are further apart.
A report by WWF-Australia estimates that the fires affected as many as 14,736 koalas in New South Wales with a parliamentary inquiry suggesting koalas would be extinct in the state by 2050 without action to save habitat.
Habitat restoration and connectivity
One of the aims of Friends of the Koala is to encourage landholders to undertake tree-planting activities to link up the existing patches of remnant koala habitat to create a more continuous corridor of food and shelter. Landholders and local habitat restoration groups rely on Friends of the Koala to supply koala food trees which koalas utilise in the Northern Rivers region.
It costs Friends of the Koala $1 to propagate a koala food tree. Funds raised through Explorers Against Extinction will enable Friends of the Koala to propagate over 3,000 koala food trees to supply to landholders and local restoration groups in the Northern Rivers Region of NSW.
Images courtesy of Brad Mustow, Friends of the Koala
Support from Explorers Against Extinction has meant that we are a step ahead in our mission to protect NSW’s declining koala population. The Black Summer was the worst environmental disaster witnessed in history, killing or displacing three billion animals, so it’s our first priority to start rebuilding habitats to protect our beloved native wildlife.