Calls for 'koala ark' to be set up in Toowoomba region

Does the Toowoomba region need a koala sanctuary?
Does the Toowoomba region need a koala sanctuary? Ben Beaden

AN ENVIRONMENTAL organisation has called for a koala sanctuary to be established in the Toowoomba region.

World Wildlife Fund Australia's Dr Martin Taylor has outlined an area south-west of Toowoomba as a possible "koala ark", saying the Range remained one of the last north-south junctions left for koalas to migrate.

The comments come on the back of studies by the University of Queensland into declining koala populations in south-east Queensland.

No data exists to track koala numbers in the Toowoomba, but Dr Taylor said the region would be perfectly suited for a koala sanctuary if the State and Federal Governments came to the table.

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"There are quite a lot of koalas on that Range and we want to make sure that they're protected," he said.

"There's no other linkages for koalas north-south other than Toowoomba Range.

"This is mostly aimed at the Federal Government because we did have a national reserves system program, which was a funding program for private sector and state governments.

"Under the current government there's a commitment, but we don't see any more funding because the federal government has stopped that program."

Dr Taylor also said more research was needed into local koala populations, saying it would provide a launchpad for conservation action.

"I think we need to investigate that - it looks important to us," he said.

"We have to look closely at that Toowoomba Range.

"We're really lacking north-south linkages, but these finds are just a broad analysis."

Yesterday was Wild Koala Day.

World Wildlife Fund's Dr Martin Taylor.
World Wildlife Fund's Dr Martin Taylor. WWF

Topics:  koala sanctuary toowoomba world wildlife fund

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