Sunday, July 23, 2017


Radio National recently carried a  report  about the  plight of Koalas in which it was said  they were in danger of being wiped out in parts of  Queensland  and  New South Wales   due to stress  caused by loss of habitat and  food   through  clearing of land  for   urban expansion ,  farming , mining, road  kill,  dogs , feral cats , chlamydia  and  conjunctivitis .
Illustration from national report on plight of  Koalas , not Magnetic Island
Somehow unnoticed by Townsville media  are the  deaths of  Koalas  on Magnetic Island.  Little Darwin recently reported the episode in which devoted  island carer Linda  Wootten, with the help of backpackers and others , retrieved a  distressed  Koala   on the  popular  Forts Walk.  It had a bunged up eye and a  damaged  claw .
It was hoped that  with care  and attention  at the Koala Hospital, where it was  found to be undernourished , with a growth on an eye ,   its  condition would improve   for  it  to be operated on  and saved.  This  did  not eventuate  as its condition  did  not improve  and  it  had  to  be  euthanased.
Not long  after, Linda had  to retrieve  a   dead  Koala,  on the same Forts Walk,  which   was  found  to  have a  dead  joey in  its pouchA "terrified " Koala was  recued  during  a  Full Moon Party  at the  X Base  backpackers  resort .  It was described  as  a  "petrified  marsupial ",  gripping for  dear life  halfway up a tree , taken to  a  safer  , quieter  location .   
Some months ago a Koala  was   killed  by dogs in the grounds of a residence . Koalas  turn up  from  time to time at the primary school .
Cuddly  Koalas  are  used    to sell  the  attractions of  the  island   at  a   time when  the Townsville City  Council is talking about opening up more walking tracks on the  island  which  you  would  think  will  impinge on the Koala habitat . Furthermore, it was enthusiasticaly envisaged   Australian and  Singaporean troops  might   compete against   each  other  in  races across the  island, bring in  bucks.  Anyone  think  what  this   might  do  to  resident  Koalas ?

 More  importantly, what  is  making  island  Koalas  crook,  killing  them  ?