Come and get koala-fied at the annual Narrandera Koala Count

I spy with my little eye, something beginning with ‘K’…

Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus)

Join the annual Narrandera Koala Count on Sunday 5 May for your chance to see a koala in the wild!

The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and the Narrandera Koala Regeneration Committee are calling for as many keen-eyed koala spotters as possible.

NPWS Ranger Caitlin Headon said the count has been running for the past 30 years and each year, between 30 and 70 koalas are spotted by volunteers.

“Locals become a koala detective for the day, learning how to spot koalas using clues such as scratches and bullet-shaped droppings around the base of trees,” Ms Headon said. 

The Narrandera Koala Count is a rare opportunity for all in the community to see koalas in their natural habitat, while also helping NPWS get a snapshot of how the population is faring.

Koalas were released into the Narrandera Nature Reserve in 1972 with the hope of re-establishing the colony. Since then, the population has increased and spread down both sides of the Murrumbidgee River.

“The more people who take part, the more koalas we generally count – so grab some binoculars and bring the whole family for a fun day out,” Ms Headon said.

This year, the Narrandera Koala Regeneration Committee is receiving about $5,000 funding from the NSW Koala Strategy as part of the Government’s commitment to supporting local koala conservation initiatives.

This funding will help to build a scientific knowledge base about the local koala population from the information gathered during the community’s counting efforts.

To take part in the Koala Count, follow the signs from the Lake Talbot Canal Bridge and meet at the Narrandera Flora and Fauna Reserve at 9:30am for a 10:00am start.

The counting will finish around midday and Rotary will provide a BBQ lunch for volunteers for a gold coin donation.

"Please remember to bring a water bottle, wear long trousers, sturdy covered shoes, a sun hat, mosquito repellent and sunscreen", Ms Headon said.

For more information please contact the Griffith NPWS Office on 6966 8100 or the Narrandera Visitor Centre on 6959 5545.

If it’s raining on Sunday 5 May please call 0488 466 632 to find out whether the Koala Count has been cancelled.

The NSW Koala Strategy is a $44.7 million, three-year commitment towards securing the future of koalas in the wild.

The koala is one of six Iconic species with important social, cultural and economic significance listed under the NSW Government’s Saving our Species program program.