Amidst all the recent bad news surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak, there is finally some good news coming out of Australia.
Koalas are being released back into the wild following the devastating fires that ravaged large parts of the Australian landscape.
So far, four adult koalas and one little joey have been set free from Sydney’s Taronga Zoo to roam the Kanangra-Boyd National Park in the state of New South Wales.
These animals are the first of 12 koalas to be released back into the wild after they were rescued from the Blue Mountains area during the bushfires.
According to a statement obtained by the BBC by Dr. Kellie Leigh, executive director of Science for Wildlife ‘We have been busy assessing the burnt area that we rescued them from, to establish when the conditions have improved enough that the trees can support them again. The recent rains have helped and there is now plenty of new growth for them to eat, so the time is right.’
Great news!! We've released the first koalas back into the bush that we rescued from the bushfires in the Blue…
The remaining koalas released back into the wild will be fast-tracked due to the coronavirus outbreak, bringing the total amount of koalas released up to 13.
‘While they have coped well in care we are delighted to finally send our koalas home,’ said Dr. Leigh.
The release of just four koalas and one joey might seem like nothing more than a drop in the ocean, but it represents an important step towards the rehabilitation of the koala population.
According to Jen Tobey, population sustainability researcher at San Diego Zoo Global, ‘There is still a lot of work to be done to assess what is left of koalas in this region and plan for population recovery. We are dedicated to continuing to support this critical work to conserve a significant koala population.’
Image: Facebook/ Science for wildlife LTD