Damian Dunlop

Tweed koalas battle deadly disease

IT is believed that up to 65 per cent of wild koalas on the Tweed Coast are suffering from serious illness.

Continued studies by scientists have highlighted the impact koala retrovirus (KoRV) and chlamydia are having on koala populations around the country.

Recent surveys of koalas in the Moreton Bay area by Wildlife Warriors have shown that as of this month, the koala infertility rate is 57 per cent in sexually mature females at Brendale and 45 per cent in the sexually mature females at Narangba.

Lorraine Vass, president of Friends of the Koala, says Tweed koalas are similarly affected.

“Definitely, we have got a lot of disease which covers the whole of the North Coast. Generally speaking, across the whole of the Northern Rivers probably over 65 per cent of animals that come into care are because of disease,” she said. “I suggest that percentage would hold true for Tweed koalas.”

She said Tweed Coast koalas were “just hanging on” and continued loss of habitat was impacting on their genetic robustness.



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