Funds from the Tweed Shire Council will be used to help protect koalas and their habitats.
Funds from the Tweed Shire Council will be used to help protect koalas and their habitats. File

Tweed koalas under threat

THE Tweed's coastal koala populations could soon be protected as an endangered species.

The Tweed Coast Koala Advisory Group has sent a submission to the NSW Scientific Committee nominating that the koala populations be put on an endangered species list.

According to the Tweed-Brunswick Coast Population of the koala submission delivered to the committee, there were three resident koala populations in the study area.

"These areas collectively approximate 1030ha of occupied habitat in the central portion of the TCSA in the general localities of Kings Forest, Round Mountain and Pottsville Wetlands," the submission stated.

The submission said the greatest short-term threats to the koala populations were fires, road strikes, and dog attacks but the largest short-term threat was disease.

"Since July 1 2007 when Friends of the Koala Inc commenced licensed activities in Tweed Shire it has dealt with 40 mortalities from the study area," the submission stated.

"Of these, 20 animals have succumbed to disease, nine animals have been road strike victims, three dog attacks and eight animals have dies of other or unknown causes."

Tweed Coast Koala Advisory Group chairman Dot Holdom said she was confident the koala populations would be protected under the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995.

"I am very confident. The scientific committee will assess it and we meet all the requirements," Cr Holdom said.

"A lot of time and effort has gone into the research."

Cr Holdom said disease, such as Chlamydia, had a significant impact on the local populations.

"We are yet to work out what is the cause but I don't think we are far off a solution," she said.



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