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Koalas facing 'local extinction' from part of Queensland's Fraser Coast

The ABC's Jess Lodge reports (18.5.17) on dwindling koala population numbers in coastal areas to the north of Brisbane, as authorities and researchers use innovative methods to determine the extent of the loss of habitats and fauna.

'A once-thriving population of koalas is disappearing from parts of Queensland's Fraser Coast, and researchers say a larger survey is needed to figure out why.

'There were numerous sightings of koalas in Tiaro, south of Maryborough, during a public survey 15 years ago, but a recent survey by researchers from the University of the Sunshine Coast found none.

'Researcher Anthony Schultz spent two months surveying and did not see a single koala, or find any evidence that koalas were, or had recently been, living there.

'"We found nothing. It was very surprising, there is lots of good habitat there, lots of state forests and council reserves and areas where koalas should be living very happily," he said.

'... While koalas face a variety of threats, including dog attacks, bushfires, car strikes, habitat loss and fragmentation, and disease, Mr Schultz said the cause of the disappearance of the Tiaro population was unknown.'


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