Toondah koalas endangered by Walker Group’s proposed apartments project

Tyler koala with GPS tracking gear in December 2016 – Photo: Chris Walker

Claims that the proposed Toondah Harbour development will not have a significant impact on koalas living in and around the precinct are fanciful thinking.

Walker Group’s idea of providing a fauna underpass to remove the threat from increased traffic is flawed as it won’t be effective in such a built-up urban environment, considering extensive fauna exclusion fencing without breaks would be required to funnel koalas to the underpass. 

Image from Figure 15-12: Koala Underpass Concept Design in Draft EIS Toondah Harbour

This type of mitigation measure is generally only used in areas that do not contain high density residential area and is not suitable for a heavy pedestrian traffic area. 

As for planting 1,000 trees, these won’t be any use to koalas for at least ten years which Koala Action Group (KAG) suggests will be too late for this population of koalas.

More koala tree planting near Toondah Harbour should happen anyway. KAG (with the support of Redland City Council) has been doing tree planting in the Redlands for more than three decades.

Tracking the Toondah koalas

KAG in partnership with an ecology group undertook a GPS koala tracking project and learned how koalas living in the Toondah area move across the landscape, their habitat usage and breeding and health status. 

After a period of 12 months tracking several Toondah koalas, we found that the population were breeding, mostly healthy and densities of koalas in the Toondah precinct higher than elsewhere in the Redlands. 

This research also showed koalas regularly cross four roads within and near the Toondah precinct as they move along the north-south coastal corridor and east-west creek corridor. 

KAG firmly believes these koalas will not cope with the substantial increase in traffic during the 20 year construction phase and the several thousands of additional residents that would live in this confined area if Walker Group’s proposal was allowed. 

Put simply, the Toondah koalas cannot possibly survive the monstrous scale of the proposed development.

Federal Government approval of the Toondah apartments project would be a death sentence for the Toondah koalas.

Debbie Pointing
Koala Action Group

Redlands2030 – 27 October 2022

0 thoughts on “Toondah koalas endangered by Walker Group’s proposed apartments project”

  1. You may say that the conclusions of the Koala Action Group (KAG) at Toondah Harbour are biased in favour of koala conservation because that is their concern. I am not a member of the KAG yet I can confirm that a dramatic increase in traffic will result in more koala deaths and ultimately in the complete loss of koalas from this area. The Walker Corporation admits that such a commercial development would require at least 50 truck-loads of fill per day, 6 days per week for the next 15-20 years. Talk of planting eucalypt saplings is just that – talk. A eucalypt sapling takes at least 15 years to grow enough to be able to support a single koala. If we are serious about wildlife conservation then we need to listen to the experts.

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