10 May, 2018 –
The koala is an iconic species of state, national and international importance. When data was released in 2016 that showed a declining koala population, despite dedicated policy and planning responses, the Queensland Government commissioned a Koala Expert Panel to provide advice on actions to ensure the long-term persistence of koala populations in the wild within South East Queensland.
The Koala Expert Panel has conducted an extensive review of Queensland’s koala policies and provided their findings to the Queensland Government in the report, Queensland Koala Expert Panel: A new direction for the conservation of koalas in Queensland.
The Panel provided six overarching recommendations linked to six key objectives, and over 60 recommended actions.
Queensland Koala Expert Panel key objectives:
- A strategic and coordinated approach to koala conservation
Develop a mechanism for implementing a strategic action plan for koalas that ensures coordination across multiple levels of government, community, NGOs and industry to achieve the long-term recovery and persistence of koalas in SEQ.
- Koala habitat is protected
Simplify and strengthen the planning framework to ensure the effective and consistent long-term protection of koala habitat across SEQ and resource incentive and partnership mechanisms to protect koala habitat on private land.
- Strategic and landscape-scale koala habitat restoration
Develop and adequately resource regulatory, incentive and partnership mechanisms to achieve strategic koala habitat restoration at landscape scales in SEQ, particularly in identified priority areas.
- Coordinate threat reduction and koala population management
Resource and implement a new coordinated threat reduction and koala population management strategy that complements habitat protection and restoration activities, particularly in identified priority areas.
- Strong community engagement and partnerships
Develop and implement a strategy for partnership development and engagement with the broader community, utilising an approach that is sensitive to the nature and views of local communities.
- Targeted mapping, monitoring, research and reporting
Develop targeted and high quality koala habitat and threat mapping, monitoring and research programs that aim to: (1) identify key koala ecological values and threats; (2) measure changes in koala ecological values and threats over time, as well as understand the drivers of those changes; (3) support policy and management decision-making; and (4) communicate trends and outcomes transparently and publicly to enhance engagement.
The Queensland Government Response to the Queensland Koala Expert Panel’s report accepts all six recommendations and supports the actions either fully or in-principle.
Read the Koala Expert Panel’s report:
Queensland Koala Expert Panel: A new direction for the conservation of koalas in Queensland
Read the Queensland Government’s response document:
Koala Conservation Response The Queensland Government Response to the Queensland Koala Expert Panel’s Report A new direction for the conservation of koalas in Queensland
For more information visit: https://www.ehp.qld.gov.au/wildlife/koalas/review-conservation-measures.html