Almost 40 people from all walks of life and from all points of the compass gathered at the historic St Andrews Anglican Church at Ormiston to say farewell to Ivory. They concluded the gathering with a political barb…
“Mayor hear us roar….Next election you’re out the door!”
Ivory Koala was well known to the local community for more than four years. She was euthanised on Saturday, 31 January, after her stress-related health condition deteriorated.
The death of Ivory was reported in full in the Redland City Bulletin 4/2/2015.
The gathering was addressed by Meghan Halverson from the Queensland Koala Crusaders (QKC). She spoke about the world wide attention koalas are receiving and the regional and statewide plight of koalas. QKC filmed the event for a documentary to be shown in Australia and overseas. The documentary will alert people everywhere about the decline in koalas and koala habitat across Queensland.
Tribute to Ivory
Judie Rose and Adelia Berridge coordinated the gathering, having led the community fight to protect the trees including offering to buy the land.
Judy opened proceedings and welcomed all, she went to say “we are gathered today to acknowledge the death of Ivory who was our community’s special companion for 5 years and to honour the unique role that native animals play in our environment and our lives”.
“Not everyone understands the extent that a loss of such a unique animal can affect us, particularly as Ivory and her kin are becoming a diminishing part of our Redlands landscape, and a threatened species Australia wide.
“It is important for us to acknowledge that any grief we feel is nothing compared to what you (Ivory) have suffered and lost.
“Our community fought hard to save your (Ivory’s) habitat-we did all we could. But forces bigger than ourselves , came in and took your trees away”.
Gathering for our memorial ceremony during this huge loss helps us to acknowledge the significance that koalas and other native fauna and flora have in the circle of life.
Ms Rose concluded “This ritual also brings light to the grief that will take time to heal as with any loss. RIP Ivory.
A number of people presented through poem, oration, reading and song …… including…
The Koala’s Plea
Can you see my ragged fur, fur which once was silver grey?
Do you see that now I wander, whether it is night or day?
Do you see just how I suffer, how my eyes are red and sore?
If you just ignore this warning, we soon will be no more.
You are my last hope for salvation
You have to recognise my plight
You need to stop the bushland clearing
You must believe this is not right.
If you do not hear my crying, do not listen to my pleas
Then the Redlands will be lonely, no koalas in the trees
No corridors of bushland: just roofs and roads you’ll see.
Tomorrow is too late to listen; there’ll be no tomorrow then, for me.
….with permission of Jan Smith
Those gathered joined in the reciting (or chanting) of a poem by Madeleine Mionnet…
Redlands Hear Us Roar
Redland Councillors hear us roar
In numbers too large to ignore
We know too much about your current spend
we do not believe your pretend
Cuz we’ve heard it all before
We’ve thrown the gauntlet to the floor
Next election you’re out the door!
You may have wont’s round
Koala trees are on the ground
Your callous disregard
only serves to make us strong
Our fight will be lifelong
Our koalas to safeguard
Our resolve is unbowed
Save koala land we shout from the treetop
Rampant development must stop
Our campaign will be nonstop
Mayor hear us roar
Next election you’re out the door!