THE announcement of 2000 hectares of dedicated wildlife habitat in the Mount Boss State Forest near Wauchope has been questioned by local koala activists.
The new area, announced by Environment Minister Gabrielle Upton, is part of the state government’s $45 million koala strategy and will see more support given to the state’s coastal koala population.
Local koala activist Martine Moran said while the additional habitat was welcome, it could be better placed elsewhere.
“It is fantastic to see this kind of support for the state’s koalas,” Ms Moran said.
“However, it would be nice to see something like that happen on this side of the range.
“It seems to me that most of the funds are being sucked into that part of the state, while we are being largely overlooked.”
Ms Moran said additional support for local wildlife was “crucial”.
“We are really at a tipping point at the moment,” she said.
“While it is great to see some of the state’s wildlife getting some help, I would really love to see the state government come at it from two fronts and give us some support as well.”
Ms Upton said the additions would not only be a great help for koala conservation on the north coast of NSW, but for other threatened species.
“Some 1382 hectares of the Mount Boss State Forest near Wauchope will be transferred to NPWS management to become known as the Kindee Creek State Conservation Area,” Ms Upton said.
“Kindee Creek is not only habitat for koalas, but for also for about 30 threatened species including masked and sooty owls, the glossy-black cockatoo, and a number of threatened micro bats.
“What makes this addition especially valuable is that it helps bridge a gap between the relatively well- represented coastal conservation reserves and mountain habitats with the mid-elevation foothills country.”