Aussie bid to save koalas by fly­ing them to Pom­my­land

Daily Express - - INSIDE POLITICS - By Claire Hay­hurst

THESE well-trav­elled koalas have jet­ted 10,000 miles from Down Un­der to their new home in Bri­tain – the first of their kind to live in Europe.

The five south­ern koalas ar­rived from a wildlife park near Ade­laide to Lon­gleat Sa­fari Park, Wilt­shire, via Heathrow ac­com­pa­nied by keep­ers and a veterinary team.

Con­ser­va­tion ex­perts hope they will act as am­bas­sadors for the species in Europe in an in­ter­na­tional ef­fort to spread small groups to parks and zoos across the world.

South­ern koalas, which have thicker fur and can weigh twice as much as northern koalas, are not en­dan­gered but are con­sid­ered to be vul­ner­a­ble.

Num­bers have dropped nearly 80 per cent in two decades, in part due to an epi­demic that has rav­aged the species.

Lon­gleat has built Koala Creek for its new guests, in­clud­ing a stream, eu­ca­lyp­tus trees, climb­ing poles and nat­u­rally-themed habi­tats. And they will be given the win­ter to set­tle in be­fore go­ing on show next spring.

Bill Muir­head, agent gen­eral of the govern­ment of South Aus­tralia, said: “The ar­rival of the first south­ern koalas in Europe is a mile­stone in the fight to pro­tect the koala pop­u­la­tion in South Aus­tralia.”

Pi­o­neer­ing koalas left this wildlife park near Ade­laide to make their new home in Bri­tain

Inset, the five koalas ar­riv­ing at Heathrow Thurs­day night and, above, set­tling in at Lon­gleat yes­ter­day

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.