We don’t always see our fluffy friends until it’s too late and Lismore Council is hoping to help us get better at knowing where koalas are, so we can slow down and watch out for them.
To this end, Lismore City Council will install temporary signs at six identified koala-strike hotspots around the shire.
Council’s Environmental Strategies Officer Angie Brace says that since the beginning of this year 33 koalas were killed on roads in the Lismore Local Government Area. ‘This is 33 too many.
‘We want to alert motorists to slow down and be aware of koala crossing particularly in these areas to reduce the risk of hitting koalas and other wildlife as they move between habitats.’
Signs installed at six major hotspots
Ms Brace says the temporary signs, funded by the State Government, will be installed at six major hotspots, including three new locations. They are Ballina Road Goonellabah, Dunoon Road at Modanville, Wyrallah Road at Tuckurimba, Coraki Road at Ruthven, Bangalow Road at Clunes and the Bruxner Highway at McKees Hill.
Ms Brace said koalas and other wildlife are out and about at this time of year as they search for food and mates in increasingly isolated pockets of habitat.
‘Koalas are vulnerable to extinction in NSW and these roads cut right through some of their prime habitat.
‘Our roads were built through their homes, the place they live and raise their young, and they need to traverse this habitat for breeding and feeding. It is up to us as drivers to be vigilant about their presence.’
Motorists need to do their bit
The signs will be erected today, Monday, 1 November.
‘We really want motorists to do their bit to save our vulnerable animals.
Motorists can also be alert for koalas or other wildlife by scanning the side of the road during the day and watch for ‘eyeshine’ which is the reflection from animals’ eyes at night,’ says Ms Brace.
You can report injured or deceased koalas that you see on the side of roads. Even dead koalas can provide valuable information to researchers and carers about where koalas are being hit.
To report sick, injured koalas or dead koalas on the Friends of the Koala 24-hour hotline on 6622 1233.