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The royal touch - The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Catherine, meet Leuca the Koala during a visit to Taronga Zoo, in Sydney, last month. AAP/Dan Himbrechts

How many visitors can a koala bear? Not many, it seems

Everyone loves to get close to a koala. They are an Australian icon and a major ecotourism attraction. A photo with a koala is a holiday must for many overseas visitors. But how well do these celebrity…
A koala at Trinity Beach in far north Queensland. Flickr/Mshai (Michael Fontenot)

Fuzzy words endanger koalas' lives and habitat

It was a breath of fresh air when, in 2012, the federal government listed koalas as being “vulnerable” in Queensland, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory under national environment law…
The pitch of male koalas' mating calls is about 20 times lower than it should be. wazuluwazu

Grunt work: unique vocal folds give koalas their low-pitched voice

The secret to koalas' distinctive low-pitched vocalisations has been found, according to a study published today in the journal…
Wild koala in the Western Downs region of Qld exhibiting abnormal behaviour due to drought conditions. P. Murphy, December 2009

The koala in the coalmine

If we need an indicator that climate change is upon us, we need look no further than Australia’s koala. The koala family (Phascolarctidae) has existed in Australia for tens of millions of years, yet in…
The Queensland government has weakened environmental regulations to get more development along the coast. John Harvey

Planning changes to accelerate Queensland coast development

The Newman-led Liberal-National Party (LNP) government in Queensland is aiming to boost economic growth by focusing on development in four areas; agriculture, tourism, mining and residential/commercial/industrial…
Suburban development makes new homes for humans, but leaves koalas with nowhere to go. Darryl Jones

Koala Cul-de-sac? Development a dead end for wildlife

It’s obviously feel-good, family-friendly marketing, but the brutal reality is those “Sugar Glider Road”, “Wallaby Close” and “Fairy Wren Circuit” street signs are almost certainly memorials for absent…
Arise marsupial: the NSW town of Campbelltown could be the place to claw back Big Koala status from this one at Dadswell Bridge, Victoria. Flickr/pixelhut

High time for NSW to have a Big Koala debate

One of Campbelltown Council’s councillors, facing re-election in the upcoming elections, recently suggested that the city should construct a “Big Koala” (BK) in the style of other “big local features…
Koalas face some serious threats, and listing them as “vulnerable” is an important step to saving them. AAP

The vulnerable koala: are we in time to save our national icon?

This week, the Australian Government listed several koala populations as “vulnerable”, giving them special protection. As a koala researcher and conservation planner, I am most impressed with Minister…
As Australia gets warmer and drier, koalas will struggle to survive. JSFauxtography

Koalas, people and climate change: not a good mix

On 22 September, a Senate inquiry released its report, The koala - saving our national icon. The inquiry made 19 recommendations, and called for more funding for koala research. The environment minister…

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