4,500 hectares of koala habitat near Port Macquarie now protected
4,500 hectares of bushland containing koala-preferred habitat near Port Macquarie will be protected forever following its purchase by the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service.
The property, located west of Port Macquarie and within the traditional lands of the Biripi nation, occupies a critical position between four existing National Parks and Wildlife Service reserves and between two known koala populations at Comboyne and South Kempsey.
The property is already home to between 30 and 60 koalas.
The land also provides suitable habitat for at least 45 threatened species, including the endangered Hasting River mouse and the spotted-tailed quoll, hollow-dependent species such as the greater glider, and a range of birds including the glossy black cockatoo and wompoo fruit-dove.
Connecting these reserves will safeguard the health and resilience of the habitat and secure safe corridors for koalas to move through the landscape.
The acquisition will also enhance protection for declared wilderness areas that abut the property, which form part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area.
The Mid North Coast is home to two of the 10 stronghold koala populations in New South Wales.
Acquisition of the property was funded under the NSW Koala Strategy.
Quotes attributable to NSW Environment Minister Penny Sharpe:
'Opportunities to acquire large parcels of private land featuring koala habitat along the NSW coast are extremely rare, so this is a huge win for koala conservation.'
'Permanent protection of this property as part of the national parks estate will not only secure the koala-preferred habitat– it will also enable us to lessen the increasing and cumulative threats faced by koalas.'
'With active management of fire, weeds and feral animals, we will continue to maintain and improve this habitat for koalas and other native species.'