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July 20, 2024

Lifeline for Pottsville’s wildlife

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Proposed wildlife protection areas in and around Pottsville. Image supplied.

Plans to prohibit dogs and cats from the areas around Pottsville will form part of the of Tweed Councils proposal for three Wildlife Protection Areas in and around Pottsville and they are currently seeking community feedback. Koala Beach, the Pottsville Environment Park and the southern end of the Pottsville Wetland including the Black Rocks sports field are being considered for inclusion in the wildlife protection areas.

‘I applaud  the Tweed Shire Council for doing what they can to help coastal koalas to survive. And this looks like a small but hopefully significant step in that direction,’ said Scott Sledge, president of the Northern Rivers Guardians.

‘Humans are waking up to the fact that we can’t expect to survive ourselves as the sole occupiers of this magnificent planet. I am loyal to my species, but we humans need to allow a little space for the survival of other species. If we don’t save the koalas, I believe we ourselves could follow the dinosaurs and the Tasmanian Tigers into extinction.’

Council director of community and natural resources, Tracey Stinson, said the designation is justified due to the very high conservation significance of these areas.

‘Wildlife Protection Areas are public places set apart for the protection of native animals and their habitats under the NSW Companion Animals Act 1998,’ Ms Stinson said.

‘These areas contain numerous threatened species – including koalas – and are part of the few remaining intact natural areas on the Tweed Coast.

‘They are also being closely managed for conservation outcomes, with significant ongoing investment in ecological restoration, revegetation, vertebrate pest control and threatened species management.’

Restrictions are already in place for dog and cat ownership and activity in the proposed areas, meaning the impact on domestic pets is expected to be negligible.

Additional bushland reserves will also be considered in the future for declaration as Wildlife Protection Areas.

In accordance with the Wildlife Protection Area Policy adopted by Council in November 2017, any proposals to do so will involve prior consultation with the community and clearly identify any impacts on domestic pets.

The Koala Beach Wildlife Protection Area will include all Council managed public land within the boundaries of the Koala Beach development. The majority of this land is bushland, but includes a small amount of Council operational land (i.e. Koala Beach sports field).

The Pottsville Environment Park Wildlife Protection Area will include all Council managed public land within the boundaries of Pottsville Environment Park. The majority of this land is bushland, but includes a Council managed road reserve (Centennial Drive west of Cudgera Creek) and the community building and parkland surrounds within the Park.

The Pottsville Wetland (south) Wildlife Protection Area will include the Black Rocks sports field and the surrounding bushland area. It will also include the adjacent Council managed bushfire Asset Protection Zone and an unsealed section of Kellehers Road reserve that bisects the Pottsville Wetland.

Proposed Wildlife Protection Area declarations are on public exhibition and open for comment from 21 May 2018 for a 28 day period until June 17.

To view the proposal and instructions on how to make comment visit council’s website at www.tweed.nsw.gov.au after 21 May under ‘On Exhibition’.

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