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Byron Shire
March 22, 2023

An election to decide the fate of koalas

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Susie Hearder has organised a protest outside the office of Geoff Provest MP today at 10am. Photo supplied.

The Animal Justice Party (AJP) says that this election will decide the fate of koalas and the AJP candidate for the Seat of Tweed, Susie Hearder, has organised a protest outside the office of Geoff Provest MP today, World Wildlife Day, at 10am to highlight the issue.

Ms Hearder says this comes after another perfectly healthy female koala was killed on Clothiers Creek Rd at Tanglewood, and her pinky joey tragically had to be euthanased.

‘This is happening every week in the Northern Rivers,’ she said. ‘To lose a healthy female breeding koala is devastating, especially when the species is under such pressure. This mum and her baby didn’t stand a chance as signage alone won’t stop them being killed on the roads we build through their habitat.’

Dead koalas devastating for first responders

Ms Hearder says witnessing and picking up the limp and still warm body of a mother koala and her baby is devastating for first responders. ‘Wildlife rescuers suffer emotional trauma and carry the financial burden including, equipment and escalating fuel costs while desperately trying to save our precious koalas against increasing challenges.’

Ms Hearder says three years have passed since the NSW Government Inquiry into Koala Populations released 42 recommendations to stop koalas going extinct in NSW.

‘NSW koalas are now listed as endangered and the current LNP Government has failed to act. Supporting only 11 of the Inquiry recommendations, koala habitat across NSW remains unprotected and koalas face a trajectory to imminent extinction.

Estimates of 8,000 koalas killed in Black Summer Fires

‘Habitat loss, including unregulated land clearing, logging and the climate emergency is killing koalas. An estimated 8,000 koalas were killed in NSW in the Black Summer Fires, yet Forestry NSW are decimating what is left of our burnt-out public forests with industrialized logging, even in forests included in the proposed Great Koala National Park.’

The AJP say they want urgent action on all 42 Inquiry recommendations. The party’s election platform includes a range of progressive initiatives, including; wildlife-friendly roads and infrastructure, funding for wildlife rescue organisations, incentives for private landholders to protect koala habitat, an end to native forest logging and establishing a Commissioner for Wildlife.

Voting for koalas

Ms Hearder says that how people vote in this election will determine the government priority given to koalas and their fate. ‘We must protect their homes and prevent any more winding back of legal protections, as we saw during the “Koala Wars”. If we can’t save koalas, one of the most loved animals on the planet the rest of our wildlife doesn’t stand a chance.

‘Our koalas simply can’t afford another term of this LNP government.’

‘We can’t let koalas just quietly disappear from our landscape, because that is what is happening right now.

‘Please vote for koalas this election.’

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  1. We need the whole world to get behind this. Koalas are native only to Australia. They are already endangered in all but 1 state and in my opinion they should be given as much protection as possible and their habitat too. Habitat loss is the number 1 cause for koalas demise today. Stop destroying their homes and they may stand a chance of avoiding extinction. It is that simple.
    We all need to stand up and be the voice for the koalas

  2. Thank you, Susie, for highlighting the fact that the situation for koalas is critical. We really have no time to lose to save them.


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