$160,000 for ‘crucial habitat’ for Gippsland Lakes Koalas

Landcare Australia

Gippsland Lakes conservationists protecting Raymond Island koalas score over $160,000 Landcare funding

Landcarers safeguarding the future of Raymond Island’s iconic koalas with vital habitat revegetation have secured over $160,000 of crucial funding from the Landcare Led Bushfire Recovery Grants.

With an 8-hectare revegetation plan to establish a wildlife corridor along the south-eastern side of the island, Raymond Island Landcare Group and Koala Island Foundation are working together to expand the Raymond Island koala trail helping the island’s 30,000 visitors get close to nature with minimum impact, whilst restoring food and habitat for koalas and other native wildlife.

As well as restoring koala habitat, the wildlife corridor along the south-eastern side of the island provides a refuge in unburnt habitat for birds, insects and evacuated wildlife in future bushfire events, including Rufous Fantail, Swift Parrot, White-throated Needletail, Grey-headed Flying-fox and Gang-gang cockatoo.

President of the Raymond Island Landcare Group Pamela Williams-Wright said; “We’re really grateful to get the funding from the Landcare bushfire recovery grant program that’ll allow us to do something on a bigger scale benefiting all creatures great and small. It’ll bring back life to a degraded area and we’re looking forward to seeing it become a thriving resource for wildlife on the island.”

“It has been encouraging to see the community and landowner’s plant over 8,000 seedlings on the island so far this year, with a big focus on restoring biodiversity”.

The 8-hectare area of jointly managed Parks Victoria and Gunaikurnai land has been selected for revegetation using over 18,000 seedlings mixed of 40 indigenous biodiverse species endemic to the coastal eco-system of East Gippsland and Raymond Island, including manna gum, which is a key food source for koalas.

Gunaikurnai traditional owners have a key role in the project and revegetation works are designed to ensure protection of key cultural heritage sites. The revegetated area will be named ‘Jirrah’ meaning Kangaroo in Gunaikurnai language.

Funded by the Australian Government, the $14 million Landcare Led Bushfire Recovery Grants (PLS INCLUDE) are supporting projects in regions impacted by the Black Summer bushfires of 2019–20.

/Public Release. This material from the originating organization/author(s) may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author(s).