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Byron Shire
April 21, 2021

Helping koalas

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Marianne Melnikas, Banora Point

I wonder if Scott Sledge has ever actually farmed during his life? His demands for privately owned land to be reserved for koalas is ludicrous.

A farmer who decided to rest land from cropping or grazing and plants trees to prevent soil erosion would not be able to remove the trees to carry out future farming activities. Farmers have a responsibility to care for the land they farm; resting areas and planting trees is not uncommon, their view is to restart farming at a time in the future.

Intensive farming practices degrade land from excessive use of fertilisers etc. But placing constraints on those farmers who would rest their lands will make them think twice about it if they cannot go back to farm the rested areas.

Having read the Draft Koala Bill from November 2020, I was horrified to learn that camphor laurel trees were counted as being koala trees. The Department of Primary Industries has declared the camphor laurel a noxious weed.

To help preserve our koala populations, more needs to be done in removing dogs and cats from the natural environment.

If we wish to eat clean, fresh, food then we must also support our farmers and farming communities not stymie them.

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  1. Hi Marianne,

    The Koala SEPP 2021 is crap in so many ways, but does not count Camphors as Schedule 2 Koala food trees.

  2. FYI, there are many trees widely known to not be koala food trees, but those they have been proven to utilise in periods of extreme heat stress for their shade value, & for their connectivity. If you read the whole SEPP &/or had a basic understanding of wildlife needs you might understand & be a little more sympathetic to the plight of our wildlife in general instead of constant whining. Just as humans (& livestock) don’t only need food, they also need shelter, & means of travelling between them. It’s a pretty basic concept. Especially as koalas & humans (& livestock) can’t fly.

    Furthermore, it beggars belief that you could claim a farmer “who decided to rest land from cropping or grazing and plants trees to prevent soil erosion” would think that sometime in the future the best use of that land would be to cut down those trees that addressed the erosion & degradation to “restart farming activities” on that same area. What do you think is preventing the erosion? How do you think it came to be so badly eroded in the 1st place that it required “resting” from agricultural activities & tree planting to rescue it? Does the presence of a tree for 10 to 20 years somehow magically restore eroded or degraded land to the point that it continue to protect it from such degradation or erosion indefinitely into the future after it has been removed?? duh? Maybe some farmers need to go back to skool or else not mange land.


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