A day to celebrate wild koalas and protect their habitats. Tag #wildkoaladay
On Friday May 3 koala conservationists are asking everyone to go outside, pick up a gum leaf from the ground and pin it on your shirt.
Gum leaves are the perfect symbol for a day to celebrate wild koalas: they are biodegradable, 100% natural and critical to koala survival.
Saving koalas is about saving our forests. Koalas are to gum leaves what chickens are to eggs.
Koalas need larger areas of eucalyptus forest than most people realise. Wild koalas are suffering from a perfect storm of attacks, and only by protecting healthy eucalyptus forest, and planting new forest, will we save them.
Koalas are one of the 10 species worldwide most at risk from climate change. This is due to a ‘perfect storm’ of effects: increasing aridity, increasing frequency of wildfire, increasing length & severity of droughts and heatwaves – all leading to stress and increasing disease. Add to this the scientifically-recorded damaging effect of increased carbon dioxide on eucalyptus leaves (leads to higher toxins and lower nutritional compounds) and the koala is running out of time. Only by increasing koala habitat – examples include the Great Koala National Park and Great Forest National Park proposals – will improve their chances.
Meanwhile, Australia is removing koala habitat at a catastrophic rate. Queensland is one of the world’s worst places for deforestation, up there with Brazil. Deforestation also continues at an alarming pace in NSW and Victoria. There is just no need for this. Tourism (which requires koalas) is already a much more profitable industry than agriculture, contributing twice as much revenue as agriculture and twice as many jobs.