Koala Woman Says
The Strathbogies Half of which is in this electorate) have been a public relations nightmare for the Koala. At one time, the Victorian Government argued there were 180,000 koalas there, which is impossible given the size of the habitat. If you drive through that forest it is highly fragmented, filled with pine plantations, and in the year 2000 Koalas suffered massive decline in a bushfire. AKF scientists have been conservative here given the amount of bush. I have driven through this area repeatedly and there cannot be 35,000 animals there. Elsewhere there are Koalas in the Chiltern Hills near Beechworth, and scattered populations near Benalla and between Mansfield and Yea.
Then Independent candidate Cathy McGowan's response in part to a letter seeking commitment, if elected, to support a Koala Protection Act: "...If and when the matters of concern to you come to Parliament, Cathy will be able to come back to interested persons and groups such as yours to seek your input on the details of the legislation ..."
Member for Indi
Will she Act or Axe?
Estimated AKF Koala Population: 2500-5000
Estimated Koala Habitat left: 66.4%
Estimated Federal Government Population: 20,000-35,000
The Victorian Government opposed the protection of the koala and there is no Federal protective legislation in place.