Wildlife Conservation Efforts

Australia lists Koalas as Endangered Species

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Koalas

Mains level : NA

Once found in abundance, Australia’s much-loved koalas have now been officially classified as ‘endangered’ after widespread bushfires, drought and land clearing destroyed much of their eucalyptus-rich habitat.

Koalas

IUCN Status: Vulnerable

  • According to fossil records, Koala species have inhabited parts of Australia for at least 25 million years, a WWF report states.
  • But today, only one species remains — the Phascolarctos cinereus.
  • They are found in the wild in the southeast and eastern sides of Australia — in coastal Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria.

Threats to Koalas

  • Since Europeans first settled in the region, the Koala population has faced widespread habitat loss, particularly due to agriculture and the construction of urban settlements.
  • They survive on a strict diet of up to a kilogram of eucalyptus leaves every day.
  • Due to the low nutritional value of these leaves, koalas tend to sleep for extended periods, often up to 18 hours a day, to conserve energy.

 

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