16 results for tag: koala research


Koala Genomics to Help Conserve Koalas across the Species Range

Recently, our news has been overtaken by the impact of the 2019/20 bushfires and now we want to share what else we have been working on this year. Since 2014, Science for Wildlife has been involved in collaborative work on koala genomics, using a technique that looks at whole-genome DNA to get more information than ever before from the genetic code. With this information, we aim to inform species management. Particularly since the bushfires, which had a devastating impact on koalas and their habitats, there is a need to actively manage koala populations with the aim of recovering their numbers. For that to be effective, it’s vital to have the ...

Meet our Volunteers: Jim & Carley

Our volunteers are paramount to the implementation of Science for Wildlife projects. Without them, many of our projects and initiatives would not be as effective and in some instances, not possible. Continuing on from last month’s article featuring our wonderful volunteer Julie, this month will be recognising the contributions of our husband and wife duo, Jim and Carley! Meet Jim and Carley Jim and Carley have been volunteers with Science for Wildlife for over two years. During this time they have trained in a number of fieldwork projects and played a critical role in the koala rescue efforts that occurred ahead of the catastrophic bushfire...

Meet Our Growing Team

Our work is scaling up - meet our growing team, and read about your chance to join in. We’ve dubbed the start of this year the apocalyptic summer. The four horsemen that rode on through were in the form of drought, fires, floods and then pestilence which arrived as Covid-19. It hasn’t been a favourite year for most people. However, out of the flames Science for Wildlife has emerged, a bit like Fawkes the phoenix out of Harry Potter, taking on new life to meet the post-apocalyptic challenges. We’re adapting and changing our wildlife research and conservation priorities in the burnt landscape of the Blue Mountains, to make sure we put ...

Meet Our Volunteer: Julie

Since our humble beginnings in 2014, Science for Wildlife has been actively studying Blue Mountains koalas and their habitats. This work tracking koala movements, discovering habitats, identifying suitable tree species for food and shelter, documenting mortality rates and the threats that koala populations face, would not be possible without the wonderful support of our volunteers. Our volunteers are paramount to the implementation of Science for Wildlife projects and without them, many of our projects and initiatives would not be as effective and in some instances, not possible. They also play a major role in sharing our discoveries with local ...

Where’s Wally?

We love to be able to share a good news story. A koala was reported late last week in Glenbrook in the Lower Blue Mountains. It’s not every day that a koala turns up there, and it’s probably even rarer that a koala named Wally turns up at all. How do we know his name you may ask? Wally was wearing some bling, an ear tag. So, when he was found, a photo and details of his ear tag were sent through to us to check if we knew him. We’ve never tagged any koalas in the Lower Blue Mountains, so it seemed unlikely that he would be part of any of our programs. However, upon checking, Kellie, Science for Wildlife’s ED, was delighted to discover that ...

What’s next after the bushfires?

Thanks to some amazing support from our core Project partners San Diego Zoo, and funding for our research under the NSW Koala Strategy, we are now planning some large-scale surveys across the Greater Blue Mountains region to assess where koalas survived the fires. This is vital information for planning conservation action and population recovery. We need to know where the koalas are, so we can allocate resources to protect them. For example, if the surviving koalas are mostly in areas that have been developed by people, which were also asset protection zones and didn’t burn, then those koalas face human-caused threats including vehicle strike and ...

Do koalas survive and thrive after care?

When koalas come into care, a great amount of resources, cost and time is required to rehabilitate them to the point of safe release back into the wild. Reasons for their admission are generally related to disease, dog attacks and car incidents, although fire events and subsequent translocations are increasingly impacting koala wellbeing. Unfortunately, a significant knowledge gap remains between koala rehabilitation and the resulting success or failure of koalas re-establishing in the wild. While many koalas have been rehabilitated and released, there are still very few post-release koala monitoring studies that have assessed whether or not the ...

Celebrating National Volunteer Week: Koala Tracking with S4W Volunteers

Even before the devastating bushfires of last summer, koalas were listed as a threatened species, vulnerable to extinction across most of their range in Australia. The drop in the number of koalas has been from 3-4 million historically to less than 400,000 today. This decline was a direct result of the koala fur trade until the early 1900s, followed more recently by habitat loss and fragmentation, disease, human threats in developed areas and from climate change associated phenomenon, including record-breaking drought, heat and bushfires on a scale and severity that we’ve never seen before. Since 2014, Science for Wildlife has been uncovering the ...

Is the Planet Trying to Tell Us Something?

With the impacts of the recent bushfires and currently COVID-19 being felt around the country we must ask, is the planet trying to tell us something? These events have placed immense pressure on our environment, our economy, and our mental health. Sadly, the impacts of these unprecedented times have also been felt by our wildlife, in particular our koalas. Stories of hope Over recent years, in the lead up to the catastrophic bushfire season of 2019/2020, the Science for Wildlife team were sharing stories of hope and good news from our koala project. Some of these stories included: Uncovering a large population of koalas in the Blue Mountains, a ...

Thank You to Our Donors – Large and Small

During the recent bushfire season Science for Wildlife was overwhelmed by the range of people who donated to help our cause, both locally and internationally. The incredible community support allowed us to scale up our efforts and ensure that the best available science and technology was being applied on the ground where it counted. Today we want to take the opportunity to thank those individuals, businesses and organisations for their support. Their generosity was imperative to our ability to act quickly and save precious wildlife from the unprecedented bushfires. Thank you to our donors Science for Wildlife received donations from a range of ...