By Graham Land
In April I posted about the plight of Australia’s most lovable marsupial, the Koala. The national icon faces hazards due to habitat loss, attacks from feral and domestic dogs, road traffic and even angry cattle. And then there are the droughts and wildfires. For something so supposedly beloved, the koala is getting a seriously raw deal at the hands of Australia’s human population – particularly industrial interests.
Recently, Australian Bluegum Plantations, a company with environmental credentials (now revoked), apologized for killing and maiming koalas in Victoria state.
From The Age:
"Wildlife carers raised the alarm in July after finding koalas had been killed, maimed, stranded, left suffering from pneumonia and starving in plantations in the green triangle region of Victoria and South Australia, between Mount Gambier and Portland. While there has been no population audit, it is understood there are thousands of koalas in the area."
Bluegum, a logging firm which exports woodchip, is guilty of what the timber industry in general has routinely visited upon koalas in Victoria and South Australia. Bluegum is just the largest firm involved.
See this (rather sad) report from ABC News for more. It’s a far cry from this amusing story about a koala that wandered into a hotel pub in Hamilton. I guess cute videos stand more of a chance of going viral than stories of cuddly koalas with broken backs and severed arms. Luckily the pub crawling marsupial was rescued and returned to the wild unharmed. Another story saw a koala being rescued from a rabbit trap in Melbourne. More....