A preliminary investigation of the distribution of koalas and their potential habitat in the Tweed Shire, and implications for management
School of Resource Science and Management, University of New England, Northern Rivers, Lismore 2480.
Current address: Lagoon Grass Road,via Lismore 2480.
The conservation of koala habitat was identified by Tweed Shire Council in 1989 as a priority for investigation to aid planning and decision making. The aim of this study was to determine the distribution of koalas in the shire and to identify potential koala habitat. This was achieved by personal interviews, invitations to the community to report local koala sightings and a literature search. This paper also identifies those planning considerations and constraints that exist within the shire which are relevant to koala preservation. Examples of planning instruments that can affect koala security(e.g.,local environmental plan zonings) are also examined. Other issues highlighted include the potential impact of expanding development within the shire and the need for community awareness of the principles underlying koala preservation. The major finding of the study was that the Round Mountain-Cudgen Lake environs hold special importance for koala conservation. Co-operation of the community,rural landholders,Tweed Shire Council, relevant State Government departments (e.g., Department of Planning,National Parks and Wildlife Service)will be required before a management plan can be expected to succeed.