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How can I tell male and female koalas apart?
Males are generally larger than females and have a broader head with larger ears, the male will call by loud bellowing (females do softer squeals), has a scent gland on their chest which may be stained from secretions, and are less fluffy than females.
You can see more comparisons and images of each species in our downloadable fact sheet How to tell the sex of a koala.
How do you know if a koala is sick or injured and who do you call in the Clarence to seek assistance?
Injury in koalas is not always easy to identify. If attacked by dogs or other animals, or are hit by cars, they may sustain internal injuries that result in death. If you believe a koala has been impacted by a vehicle or attack, it is best to seek assistance from a wildlife carer.
Chlamydia, a sexually transmitted infection, is common in koalas and causes:
- blindness (conjunctivitis); visible sign of clouded or pink and swollen eyes, sometimes discharge. If they are completely blind, then this symptom may manifest in behavioural changes such as no fear response to the presence of humans, an inability to navigate climbing a tree, a tendency to stand on the ground rather than seeking height, and slower than usual movement.
- urinary tract infections; visible as a brown discolouration on the bottom, also known as wet bottom
- infertility (reproductive system infections)
- deathIf caught early and treated, the koala can make a full recovery.
Experienced, trained handlers will advise what should be done to assist the koala.
What are the favoured food trees of Clarence koalas?
Grey box (Eucalyptus moluccana)
Tallowwood (Eucalytus microcorys)
Forest red gum (Eucalyptus tereticornis)
Swamp mahogany (Eucalyptus rubusta)
Small-fruited Grey gum (Eucalyptus propinqua)
How can I access koala food trees for planting?
Grafton Tree Farm
20 Smith Street, Grafton
Open most days
Contact Jon Meyers 0427 425 909
Minnie Water-Sandon Nursery
Sandon Road, Minnie Water
Open Thursdays 9 AM to 12 PM and by appointment
Contact Dennis Milne (02) 66497 993
Absolutely Fabulous Garden Centre
111 Jubilee Street, Townsend
Open most days
Contact Melita or Dean Moresby (02) 6645 1513
Maclean Community Nursery
Ironbark Drive, Townsend
Open Thursday and Friday
Contact Libby Cotter 0468 319 456
Why should I register a koala sighting?
Knowing where koalas are located in our landscape helps us to conserve the species. Data collection enables us to learn about why koalas prefer a particular habitat, why certain habitats contain more species than other similar habitats, and why koalas are declining from particular areas. By understanding their distribution, we can determine the conservation value of regional zones and further develop management guidelines for natural resources.
How can I get an accurate location or GPS point for a sighting?
Location and time and the most important pieces of information for us when it comes to your data and using it to direct management decisions within council and state government. Help us out if you can and use an App on your phone when taking photos.
IPhone: Context Camera is available on the Apple iStore and can be used to record the latitude/longitude as decimal values inset on a photo, as well as a date/time stamp - two very handy bits of information!
Android: GPS Map Camera is available on the Google Play Store and can be used to record the latitude/longitude as decimal values inset on a photo, as well as a time stamp - two very handy bits of information! Once opening the App, click on the second icon from the top left, scroll to half way down the list and select Map + Lat/Long. This will provide us with a visual and numerical representation of location as well as a date/time stamp!
What if I can't see a koala?
Why are koala populations declining?
Koalas are exposed to a number of threats in developed areas, including:
· Vehicle strike
· Dog attack
· Loss of food and habitat
· Unmanaged fire
· Swimming pools
· Impermeable fences
clearance is recognised as the major threat to koalas due to the loss of food
trees. When their habitat becomes fragmented, koalas have to move greater
distances between trees, making them more vulnerable to vehicle strikes and dog
fragmentation or disturbance can also lead to overcrowding and increased
competition. Koalas then become stressed, which may lead to health problems.
Koalas that are weakened by disease are more vulnerable to dog attack.