Koala Conservation Program

Koalas can often be seen throughout the region in both urban and bushland areas. To support the region's koalas, Moreton Bay Regional Council implements a koala conservation program that includes:

Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus)

Koala Nature Refuges

Council has set aside more than 280 hectares of land for koala habitat, through establishing Koala Nature Refuges, a class of protected area under the Queensland Nature Conservation Act 1992.

The following Council reserves are declared Koala Nature Refuges and are subject to strict conservation agreements between Council and the Department of Environment and Science:

  • Whiteside Road Park, Whiteside (2.4 ha);
  • Brian Burke Reserve, Samford Valley (268 ha); and
  • Kurwongbah Park, Petrie (12 ha).

Koala Habitat Restoration Projects

Council carries out koala habitat restoration projects, aimed at increasing the amount and quality of koala habitat in the region. Projects underway or delivered include:

  • On-going maintenance across North Ridge Circuit, North Lakes.
  • On-going maintenance at Sir Dapper Drive Park, Burpengary.
  • Brian Burke Reserve, Samford Valley - 2,060 koala habitat trees and 1,800 shrubs and grasses planted to expand the available koala habitat within and increase connectivity across the reserve.
  • North Ridge Circuit, North Lakes - 1,200 koala habitat trees and 1,000 shrubs and grasses planted in a key wildlife movement corridor to increase koala habitat and safe movement opportunities.
  • Sir Dapper Drive Park, Burpengary - 994 tube stock planted that include koala habitat trees, shrubs and grasses to expand the available koala habitat within and increase connectivity across the reserve.

Urban Koala Project

The Urban Koala Project is a collaborative research project between Council and the Sunshine Coast University, with assistance from the Queensland Government to deliver small growing gum trees (Eucalyptus kabiana) suitable for use in urban areas.

Koala Conservation Partnership Project

In 2009, the Moreton Bay Koala Conservation Partnership Project [PDF 160KB] was initiated to help secure the long-term sustainability of koala populations in the region.

Project partners include MBRC, SEQ Water, SEQ Catchments, Energex, the Department of Environment and Resource Management and the Department of Transport and Main Roads.

This project aligns activities to achieve optimal investment in koala conservation. Project outcomes include mapping, development guidelines, enhancement of existing koala habitat and reinstatement of linkages between habitat patches; koala-friendly fencing and road crossing retrofits; koala fodder plantations for carers; covenants to secure the on-ground investment; wild dog control measures, and education and awareness programs.

Milestones achieved through the project so far

  • Identification of priority areas for future koala restoration projects;
  • Revegetation of key koala habitat areas;
  • Strengthening of communication and collaboration between project partners and community groups;
  • Collaboration with DTMR on retrofitting road infrastructure to minimise car hits on main roads;
  • Identification of key sites for local road retrofitting to minimise car hits; and
  • Adoption of a Koala Conservation Policy.

Ongoing and future projects

  • On-going maintenance of Koala Fodder Plantations at Mungarra Reserve (1,300m2), Madeline Drive Park (2,810 m2) and Caboolture Regional Environmental Education Centre (1,595m2)
  • On-going retrofitting of local roads to minimise car strikes;
  • Revegetation of key habitat priority areas; and

Koala Chlamydia Vaccine Research

Council is a foundation funding partner with the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) in the research, development and initial field trials of a chlamydia vaccine for koalas. Chlamydia is a serious threat, with 40 percent of all koalas presented to wildlife hospitals showing chronic symptoms of the disease which can lead to blindness, infertility and death.

Koalas that were previously being monitored as part of Peninsular Rail Line (the Moreton Bay Rail Link project) were included in the koala chlamydia vaccine field trials, under phase one of the project. Results from the trial indicate that the chlamydial disease prevalence of this population decreased from around 28% to less than 1%, which is a promising sign.

USC is continuing development of the koala chlamydia vaccine with Council's support to implement carry out field trials throughout the region, under phase two of the project.

Wild Dog Management

Wild dogs are known to be a significant threat to koala populations across South East Queensland. Council has an extensive wild dog management program.

Koala Rescue

For assistance and advice regarding koala rescue or care please refer to:

How do I get involved in koala conservation activities?

  • Be a responsible animal owner:
    • Be alert to koalas on your property and always restrain your dog when koalas are present Do not allow your dog to roam, especially at night.
    • Always walk your dog on-lead, unless you're in a designated off-leash area.
  • Report sick or injured koalas - the region has several koala care groups that help treat and transport sick or injured koalas.
  • Get involved in conservation and restoration activities in your local area - become a Bushcare volunteer

Where to find a koala

Not sure where to find a koala? Try visiting your local park or:

  • John Oxley Reserve, Murrumba Downs
  • Old Petrie Town, Whiteside
  • Chelsea Street Reserve, Rothwell
  • Kurwongbah Park Koala Nature Refuge, Petrie
  • Whiteside Park Koala Nature Refuge, Whiteside

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