Meet Our Volunteer: Kath
With summer on the horizon and a wealth of field studies currently under way across fire zones in the Blue Mountains, never has it been more important to have a strong team of citizen science volunteers by our side. These individuals have been imperative to our ability to study our remaining koala populations and provide these animals with the resources and protection they need to survive.
In celebration of our wonderful team and continuing on from last month’s article featuring our husband and wife duo James and Carley, this month we recognised the contributions of our much-loved volunteer and videographer Kath Davis.
Kath Davis is a Sydney based videographer (KDVIDEO) who has been a volunteer with Science for Wildlife for two years. In her day job, Kath shoots and edits videos for government departments, corporate organisations, events, the arts and various not-for profit-organisations. Through her keen interest in NFPs and close family ties with our organisation, Kath has become a much-valued member of our team. She told us:
“My sister Amy and her partner Cale have been working for years with Dr Kellie as trackers and saw the need to document this important work to allow the general public to become more aware of the threat to koalas and their habitat and gain wider support generally. The existence of these particular population of koalas in the Kanagra Boyd National Park was not widely known before these studies began. I was invited to record some tracking and capturing days and as a result started to build a catalogue of video and stills that were to become quite important media assets for S4W. This was especially important when it came to gaining support for these koalas when they were under direct threat from the devastating megafires earlier this year.”
Kath’s videography skills have been of great value to our organisation’s work in wildlife conservation. Throughout her time volunteering with S4W, Kath has documented a range of activities including tracking, data collection, capturing and collaring koalas, scat detection dogs, search and rescue, koala release, water station installation and food drops. We asked Kath about her favourite memory volunteering with our organisation:
“The most exciting experience for me was having the opportunity to document the rescue of 12 koalas in front of the bushfires in mid-December. There was such a narrow opportunity to achieve what we needed to do and everyone was anxious and exhausted but knew the importance of saving this important population from being wiped out. My rough footage went worldwide. I came home to see it already on the news as I walked in covered in dust.
That three month period that the koalas were at Taronga was so busy with the need to gather browse to keep them fed that it gave us a feeling of being able to do something positive when many people were feeling powerless as they watched the continuing devastation of the fires. My favourite photo from that time was of the team in the pouring rain after the release of the final koala refugee. It was a euphoric day!“
How can you help S4W?
Work of this scale requires many hands! We are inviting volunteers from local communities and beyond to assist over the coming months and into early next year. If you’re interested in learning more and registering to help out, then please check out the link below.
For other projects updates and to learn more about Science for Wildlife community, visit our website here.