Logan & Albert Conservation Association


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OUR KOALAS NEED YOU - ARE THEY ENDANGERED?

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

koala_peering

ARE THEY ENDANGERED?

Every day newspapers and websites report information about the increasing threats to the long term survival of our iconic koala. Community and some political concern has persuaded federal government to have an inquiry to determine the status - level of legislated federal protection that is needed to avoid extinction of Australia's much loved koala.

Federal Minister for Environment MP Tony Burke has the responsibility to make that determination. This will not happen until

 

 

Who is wearing blinkers?

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

KUNGFUWho is wearing blinkers?

Whichever South East Queensland council are you live in there are plans for urban, industry, mining and infrastructure expansion - all meaning loss of bushland vegetated areas. The koala has a very specialised diet - eating only from a range of 17 eucalyptus species. We see huge old gums cut down for a road. Old growth trees and forests are critical not only for koalas but many other species using that habitat. Humans are able to build roads within a short few months or years. We cannot grow forests even in 30 years.

How much does it cost to build a forest? Millions of dollars! This economic cost needs to be added to the cost of the road. Why do we bother with our efforts to replace lost habitat? Do we do it for the animals? In reality governments do it to appease the general community. Perhaps there is a growing realization, that humans also need the forests?

Worldwide there is acceptance  that nature has a value - but when those who want to destroy the natural environment are asked to pay compensation then they cry foul!

 

LOSS OF KOALA HABITAT CONTINUES

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

ELANORA residents' anger over a proposed 15m microwave tower belonging to water retailer Allconnex was provoked further yesterday when tree-loppers cut down two mature trees and only spared a third giant gum after they began filming and journalists arrived on the scene    http://www.goldcoast.com.au/article/2011/06/04/320871_gold-coast-news.html 

 

How much is a koala worth?

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

How much is a koala worthkoala-peakstopoints? How many exist in their natural bushland areas?

Can you imagine a world without koalas?

Where would Australia be without them and the $2.5 billion a year in tourism they help bring in?

This is the value given by CEO Deborah Tabart of Australian Koala Foundation in a recent article about the unique mapping tool available on the AKF website. Although it's free to access, the information cost $8 million and thousands of volunteer hours to develop. Everyone in the world can now look at over 2000 koala habitat sites where 100,000 trees have been individually measured. Landowners can mark their own koala sightings and developers can see where koalas live. Check out the mapping tool here.

Not all landowners are happy to share their land with koalas - developing for housing or industry.In 1923 it was thought that, from an original population of over 10 million, there were as few as 45,000 koalas left in Australia. Now with 80 per cent of koala habitat  cleared for buildings, roads, hard infrastrucure  and resource exploration that number is far lower. For a koala, 'no tree' means 'no me'. Read the article here.

Unfortunately the property industry feels no obligation to help protect this unique Australian marsupial - claiming that houses would cost more - obviously passing on all costs to the consumer. Their concerns are reported in this Financial Times article.

The current Senate Inquiry into the status, health and sustainability of Australia's koala population with an interim report tabled 13 May 2011, advising that the committee now intends to table its final report on Wednesday, 24 August 2011.

The submissions received can be read here.

The conservation movement - and LACA Logan and Albert Conservation Association especially - believe the long term survival ie  health and sustainability of the koala in Queensland will only be achieved with its being listed as endangered under Australia's EPBC Act.

If you share our concerns, consider writing to your representative as well as Minister Tony Burke who is tasked with the responsibility of making a ruling on the future status of the koala. Current management plans and policies do not protect the koala's habitat and food source. Science is still learning about the ecology and behaviours of the koala but I think there is little doubt that if we clear trees for housing then the koala's survival is limited.

Legislation that has planning power, plus tax or financial incentives to encourage and support private landholders to protect biodiversity are part of the necessary foundation stones, if Australia is going to save the koala on private land. NO TREE NO ME - sums up what we need to do.

 

KOALAS - will they survive in Greater Flagstone UDA?

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

KoalaPopulations-akfKOALAS - will they survive in Greater Flagstone UDA?

The koala was nominated for listing as a threatened species under national environment law—the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999—and was assessed by the Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) during 2008-2010. The TSSC recommended that the koala was not eligible for listing as nationally threatened, but noted that reaching a conclusion was challenging due to significant gaps in national koala population data.

The Minister has extended the decision timeframe on the listing of the koala as a threatened species, so that he can consider the Senate inquiry's findings before making his decision. You can follow that process here.

Detailed state or local government funded koala surveys have not been conducted in the areas proposed for UDA although DERM mapping indicates that essential koala habitat exists.

Wildlife Queensland Bayside branch have provided us with a copy their submission as it relates to koalas. The long term survival of our national iconic species is of national significance.  Read WPSQ Bayside branch submission here  submission-to-greater-flagstone-uda-01-koalas.pdf

While conservation groups like LACA advocate for the koala as a unique species within the local and regional biodiversity, other organizations such as the Urban Development Institute of Australia UDIA  told the Senate inquiry that further protection of koalas was premature and would cost much-needed jobs.

Battle of the bulldozer versus a national icon as reported in the Courier Mail here. Koala conservation is an imperative of more than just biological and cultural concern, it is an issue of national identity, international image and reputation. LACA supports the view of the UQ Koala Ecology Group which said listing koalas as endangered would at least provide a "speed bump in the road to extinction".

IF YOU SEE A KOALA PLEASE REPORT YOUR SIGHTINGS TO DERMs WILDNET.

IF YOU NEED HELP WITH THIS CONTACT LACA president Anne Page on 3297 0624 .

 

LACA submission Senate Inquiry for koalas

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

LACA submission to the Senate Inquiry for koalas

Inquiry into the status, health and sustainability of Australia's koala population

All submissions received by the Committee can be read here. The submissions will be followed by interviews with those who made submission 
 
Logan and Albert Conservation Association is no 49. Read LACAs submission here. sub49_SENATE_koala_inquiry2011.pdf 02/03/2011, 14:39
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The Senate Inquiry is now in full swing and we are waiting to find out when the hearings will occur. There were 65 submissions and Australian Koala Foundation is No. 25. AKF staff are slowly reading through all the submissions and some of them, particularly from the development industry, are just quite shocking.
The Senate document AKF wrote is the culmination of 25 years of long hard work and they are offering  supporters a chance to become part of koala history by sponsoring a page for $100.
If you are able to do this, please click here to choose your page - it is a unique opportunity and we hope you will be able to support this AKF fundraising initiative.
 

Did you hear that koala last night

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

koala_action_smDID YOU HEAR THAT KOALA LAST NIGHT?

A long term resident of Greenbank last night reported hearing the unmistakable calls / grunts of koalas in trees on his property. This information was relayed to me less than 40 minutes after the noisy koala. Evidence available to us that koalas are NOT locally extinct in Greenbank . We were both attending the SAVE GREENBANK CAMPAIGN meeting 23 February2011

If we can prove that our resident Greenbank Jimboomba Flagstone koalas are alive and well we will have a greater chance of delaying inappropriate development. 

Many of us have resident koalas that we see but do not report. Please report your sightings to LACA president Anne Page mkpage@bigpond. We have arranged to have our wildlife sightings accepted by DERM and ULDA.

SPOTTED TAILED QUOLL have also been seen in the area. We need to update that data also. GLOSSY BLACK COCKATOOS   are another significat species. While all species are important to the survival of the habitat humans also need to have a healthy lifestyle, the more iconic species named carry greater levels of protection.

 

DERM online reporting wildlife information

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

koala_action_smThe Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) has invested resources in the management and delivery of wildlife and inventory information to its internal and external clients. The Environmental Information Systems Unit is the custodian of the WildNet and Wetland Information Capture System (WIC) applications and works with DERM and external partners for the acquisition and delivery of a range of wildlife and survey information.

The reporting of wildlife - both dead and alive - to DERM IS A CRITICAL ACTION for all citizens to do.

WHY is reporting of wildlife SO IMPORTANT?

Sightings are entered into a data base and are used in DESKTOP STUDIES by consultants researchers and others to help compile environmental assessments that are part of development applications.Sometimes the citizen scientists' wildlife sightings may be the only record. 

Wildlife Online allows internet users to request species lists for selected areas, specified points or defined areas. The options include species (all, plant or animal), type (all, native or introduced), status (all or rare and threatened), records (all, confirmed or specimen), date (all or since 1980) and output (pdf or text file).

Species lists for protected areas (national parks, conservation parks and resources reserves), forestry areas (State forests and timber reserves) and Local Government Areas in Queensland are generated from summarised sighting data and species lists.

Users can also request species lists generated from summarised sighting data for buffered points or defined areas using coordinates (decimal degrees). The submitted requests are processed every 15 minutes and the resultant species lists are sent to the user’s email account as an attachment. The species outputs includes kingdom, class, family, scientific name, common name, introduced flag, NCA status, EPBC Act status, number of records and number of specimens.

For more information about Wildlife Online, please contact the WildNet Team on33305484 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

LACA Logan and Albert Conservation Association strongly urges all new residents in any area to find out what wildlife has been recorded in the area and also to continue to update the online database. This list can also be useful to help you identify a spcies you see in your area. The information has been adapted from a document DERM sent to us. This is that document. DERM_Internet_Wildlife_Information_Systems012011.doc 113.50 Kb 18/02/2011, 17:34

LACA also has  an online form you can fill in which we forward to DERM. Locate this in lefthand column front page. While sightings of koalas are critical because there are some planning regulations that may help - though they are still inadequate - all species are important.

 

 

Local native wildlife Camp Cable Road Area

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

GoogleEarth_Glider-sightingsThis image of glider sightings has been compiled from sightings reported from residents along Camp Cable Waterford Tamborine Road and Hotz Road as part of the VETO survey from March to June 2010.

The blue marker represents feather tail glider sightings. The aqua marker represents sugar glider, squirrel glider or general glider sightings.

The aqua marker with the star represent the greater glider sightings. The yellow markers represent residents who reported wildlife sightings but did not report glider sightings. There was a total of 50 residents (mostly directly affected and some indirectly affected)  so far who have reported these results to VETO.                                                                                                                          

GoogleEarth_koala-sightings

 This image with the VETO willdlife sightings from the surveys conducted from March to June 2010. Some are current sightings and some are historic sightings. There are a total of 50 residents surveyed so far (mostly directly affected and some non directly affected) . The red markers represent koala sightings reported by residents . The yellow markers represent residents who did not report seeing or hearing koalas on their property.

The use of digital tools available for us all now - as and when we learn how to use these webtools - are an essential piece of out activist - advocacy toolkit. Photos maps aerial images from Google Earth or NearMap can help us support our efforts to secure ecologically sustainable development.

Business as usual is not acceptable for us now, our children and future children.   

 

Councils to control local koala habitat - new regulations from now on

Last Updated on 12 March 2012

Redlands-koalasLOCAL councils have been given ultimate control over development proposed for koala habitat and charged with increasing habitat areas by 2020 under new State Government laws announced in the Redlands on Saturday. Sustainability Minister Kate Jones and Planning Minister Stirling Hinchliffe visited a koala revegetation site in Capalaba West to announce the two new pieces of legislation, which will dictate how developers and councils use land in order to increase koala habitat substantially by 2020.

 "The new laws will deal with irresponsible planning which has occurred in some places in the past and override existing planning schemes so that koala habitat must be taken into account," Ms Jones said.

 "Councils gave us overwhelming feedback that they were best placed to tailor localised solutions," Mr Hinchliffe said. "The main objective is that planning schemes must incorporate provisions to ensure development in koala areas delivers a net increase in koala habitat by 2020," he added. The new State Planning Regulatory Provisions (SPRP) place strict limits on developers, including banning clearing of mapped koala habitat, offset planting for unavoidable clearing of koala trees at a ratio of five trees planted for every one cleared, and requirements for koala sensitive urban design.

The new State Planning Policy (SPP) will see councils amend their planning schemes to identify and protect koala habitat while retaining and enhancing habitat connectivity with koala corridors. Councils will also have to increase the amount of bushland habitat, ensure koala movement-friendly design and layout for developments and develop a koala conservation strategy, which will be reviewed by the state to show how outcomes are being met.

Read more...
 

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