A New Vision for the Koala
Koala habitat ‘Kiss Points’ were fully mapped across the landscape.
Landholders had incentives to plant Koala forests that link fragmented habitats.
If we achieve contiguous habitat across the entire range of the Koala, then all creatures great and small could traverse through the bush unthreatened.
We could walk an uninterupted journey from south to north under the shade of beautiful gum trees, with Koalas sitting happily in the branches overhead.
With over 30 years of research behind the Koala Habitat Atlas, AKF’s next grand vision could redirect the fate of the Koala!
What is a ‘Kiss Point?’
AKF has coined the term ‘kiss point’ to describe the point in the landscape where areas of Koala habitat are connected. In some areas Koala habitat comes close to each other, but remain seperated by divisions of cleared land.
2018 marked the completion of an enormous undertaking; The Koala Habitat Atlas (KHA), a first of its kind groundbreaking scientific achievement that maps the entire habitat range of a single species. The simple yet profound slogan that the Australian Koala Foundation (AKF) has followed for over 30 years—’No Tree, No Me’—sums up our philosophy perfectly; to protect a species, we must protect it’s habitat, and high-quality mapping is one of the most crucial parts of the puzzle.
KHA maps show that remaining habitat areas come close to ‘kissing’ each other in certain areas in the landscape. Large sections of intact Koala habitat run side by side, divided by strips of cleared land. These ‘kiss points’ are key areas to identify for targetted future regeneration of the landscape and restoration of contiguous Koala habitat across the entire range of the Koala
How to make this a Reality?
The first phase on this project will be a scientific exercise using software to plot the kiss points over 1.5 million square kilometres of land. Once identified, landholders must be given incentives to plant koala forests that link fragmented habitats. Every kiss we can connect in the near future will help ensure the survival of the Koala.
AKF is all about recovery of the species and with the Federal Government now 7 years behind writing a recovery plan for the Koala – a project like this is essential.