“I just think action is now imperative. I know that it can just sound like this endless story of dearth and destruction, but these figures are right. They’re probably worse,” she told Reuters.
The decline in New South Wales likely accelerated after huge swathes of forest were devastated in wildfires in late 2019 and early 2020, but some of those areas already had no koalas.
“What we’re concerned about is places like western New South Wales where the drought over the last 10 years has just had this cumulative effect — river systems completely dry for years, river red gums, which are the lifeblood of koalas, morto,” lei disse.
The Australian government in June called for public comment on a national recovery plan for New South Wales, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory around Canberra, and whether the koala’s threatened species protection status should be raised from “vulnerable” per “endangered.” Comments on the recovery plan are due on Friday.
Besides the impact of drought and fires, land clearing by property developers and road builders has destroyed the iconic marsupial’s habitat.
“I think everyone gets it, we’ve got to change. But if those bulldozers keep working, then I really fear for the koalas,” Tabart said.