Talk koala conservation with experts and Council

A Community Science in Action Forum will provide information and collaboration opportunities for the community, researchers and Council experts.

Mayor Karen Williams said Redlands Coast was home to one of the most significant urban koala populations in Australia.

“A viable breeding population can still be found in the local area,” she said.

“Redland City Council has been working closely with research partners and the community to conserve and support local koalas.”

Cr Williams said conserving the region’s vital koala population required ongoing partnerships, especially considering much of their remaining habitat occurred on private land.

“We are 100 per cent committed to working with the community and with the right experts to ensure that this iconic national symbol is preserved in our region,” she said.

“New Council initiatives include investigating koala trails, selecting sentinel sites across the city to provide data on koala populations, early disease intervention, habitat connectivity, a digital data platform and using prototype technology for a koala tagging system.

“Community members are invited to come along to the forum or register as a virtual attendee and learn about the latest research and koala conservation initiatives that are happening around Redlands Coast, directly from the research teams.

“You will also have the opportunity to ask questions of our expert panel.”

The free community forum on 23 March at Redland Performing Arts Centre will be hosted by ‘Ranger’ Stacey Thomson with seven presentations by leading scientists and a facilitated panel discussion.

Experts speaking at the forum are: Professor Sharyn Rundle-Thiele and Dr Amy Blacker (Griffith University); Dr Romane Cristescu, Dr Katrin Hohwieler and PhD candidate Ciao Santos-Neto (University of the Sunshine Coast); Dr Kara Youngentob (Australian National University) and Dr Cathryn Dexter (Redland City Council).

The forum comes after Council’s adoption of its Redlands Coast Koala Conservation Plan 2022-2027, which will formally come into effect in July.

It has four key objectives: protect and improve koala habitat; reduce koala deaths; working with the community on awareness and engagement campaigns; and making decisions based on science.

People can register here for the forum.