1000 Flowers for the Planet - #404 Save the Koala
Whilst the koala is not actually listed as an endangered species, if Australians are not careful they will lose one of their unique native animals – an Aussie icon. Between 2.5 and 3 million koalas were shot for the American fur trade in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, yet today’s figures estimate our current koala population at a mere 40,000 to 100,000. Modern threats looming over this dwindling koala population include loss of habitat due to urban sprawl, deforestation for mining and farming, road accidents, dog attacks and population isolation. These are all man-made threats. Bushfires are a natural threat to koalas that can die from burns or smoke inhalation, or starve to death waiting for regrowth to occur.
These fabulous furry friends of ours are truly worth looking after. We can help in varied ways by actively pursuing governments at all levels to legislate for the protection of habitats, write letters to politicians, ensure dogs do not attack koalas who venture into back yards, plant trees of the correct species for koala’s to feed upon, volunteer at a koala sanctuary, buy products to support koala foundations or donate money so others can fight for the cause. Australia Zoo has an informative piece at www.australiazoo.com.au and the Australian Koala Foundation is very detailed at www.savethekoala.com.