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Koalas in Pine River Shire - distribution_ abundance and manangement

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Contact details


       The authors:
       David Dique, Harriet Preece and Deidré de Villiers



       Contact details:
       Koala Research Unit
       Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service
       PO Box 64
       Bellbowrie Qld 4070



       This document to be cited as:
       Dique, D., Preece, H., and de Villliers, D. (2003). Koalas in Pine Rivers Shire:
       distribution, abundance and management. Queensland Parks and Wildlife
       Service, Brisbane.
                                                                               ii



Summary
     The Koala Research Unit of the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service
     (QPWS) assessed the status of a regional koala population in Pine Rivers
     Shire in 2001. Information obtained from koala surveys at 22 sites and
     records of koala sightings contained in the QPWS koala database suggest
     that the regional koala population is a significant, healthy and robust
     population. Approximately 4600 koalas are estimated to inhabit Pine Rivers
     Shire. The area of remnant eucalypt vegetation of greatest significance to
     the koala population is located in the vicinity of Lake Samsonvale and Lake
     Kurwongbah. In urban parts of the Shire habitat removal and mortality
     associated with roads and domestic dogs are important factors threatening
     the long-term persistence of koalas in some parts of the Shire. To conserve
     koala populations in Pine Rivers, future planning and management must
     aim to conserve and enhance significant habitat areas and reduce the
     impact of car hits and domestic dog attacks on koalas in urban areas.

     A number of proposed conservation zones were delineated within the Shire
     based on the significance of habitat areas to koalas. Within these
     conservation zones, a series of management and planning guidelines have
     been proposed to protect significant habitat areas and manage the threats
     to koalas associated with urbanisation. It is recommended that koala
     populations can be sustained within Pine Rivers Shire by developing and
     implementing a strategic revegetation plan and public education campaigns
     and by including the recommended planning guidelines outlined in this
     report in future Pine Rivers Shire planning schemes. It is also recommended
     that monitoring of the status of the koala population form an integral part
     of future koala management programs in Pine Rivers Shire.
                                                                                   iii



Acknowledgments
      The Koala Research Unit wishes to thank Pine Rivers Shire Council and
      Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) staff and members of the
      Pine Rivers Shire community who assisted with the Pine Rivers Koala
      Project. In particular we would like to thank:

          •   Jim McEvoy, Peter Loose, Lyndall Rosevear, Lauren Appleby, Kathy
              Morgan and Kim Calio from Pine Rivers Shire Council who have
              assisted with many aspects of this project from site selection to
              organising volunteers for urban surveys and for providing advice
              on the current Pine Rivers Shire Planning Scheme;

          •   Robyn McIntosh who organised the urban koala surveys and
              provided some preliminary collation and analysis of data;

          •   Michele de Villiers for her assistance with koala surveys;

          •   QPWS staff involved in the collection of koala sighting data from
              Pine Rivers;

          •   the volunteers of the Pine Rivers Koala Care Association for their
              support throughout the research program and for their assistance
              with urban koala surveys; and

          •   Kathy Julian, from QPWS, for her technical expertise in report
              preparation.

      The QPWS Pine Rivers Koala Project, was partly funded by the Pine Rivers
      Shire Council.
                                                                                                                         iv



Table of Contents
       Summary                                                                                                            ii
       Acknowledgements                                                                                                  iii


       1.       Conserving koalas in Pine Rivers Shire                                                                   1
            1.1      Introduction .........................................................................................1
            1.2 The development of the Pine Rivers Koala Project ..........................1
               1.2.1 Location and description of Pine Rivers Shire..............................2
            1.3      Project aims and report structure.......................................................3


       2.       Koala distribution, abundance and status                                                                 5
            2.1      Introduction .........................................................................................5
            2.2 Estimating koala distribution and abundance ..................................5
               2.2.1 Stratification and survey methodology.........................................6
               2.2.2 Estimating regional koala abundance...........................................8
               2.2.3 Results of koala surveys..................................................................9
            2.3 Status of Pine Rivers koala population............................................12
               2.3.1 Sources of data .............................................................................12
               2.3.2 Sex ratios, reproductive and disease status ................................13
               2.3.3 Causes of admission to Moggill Koala Hospital.........................15
            2.4 Comparisons with other regional koala populations......................16
               2.4.1 Population density ........................................................................16
               2.4.2 Population health..........................................................................17
            2.5      Overview of regional koala population in Pine Rivers....................18


       3.       Planning and management guidelines                                                                     19
            3.1      Introduction .......................................................................................19
            3.2      Koala conservation zones..................................................................20
            3.3      Koala management objectives ..........................................................24
            3.4 Planning guidelines and management recommendations.............25
               3.4.1 Planning guidelines ......................................................................25
               3.4.2 Revegetation plan for public lands .............................................30
               3.4.3 Public education campaigns ........................................................34
               3.4.4 Existing and future road development .......................................35
            3.5      Koala population monitoring and research.....................................36


       4.       References                                                                                             38

       5.       Appendices                                                                                             42
            5.1      Koala abundance in Pine Rivers Shire..............................................42
            5.2      Evaluation of line transect sampling ...............................................44
            5.3      Koala survey site locations................................................................45
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                 1




1. Conserving koalas in Pine Rivers Shire


1.1   Introduction

            The koala Phascolarctos cinereus occurs naturally in many Eucalyptus
            communities throughout eastern Australia. In Queensland, low density
            scattered populations tend to occur throughout its range (Melzer and Lamb
            1994) with relatively dense populations occurring in localised areas,
            particularly in the south-east of the state (Kikkawa and Walter 1968;
            Gordon and McGreevy 1978; Phillips 1990). However, the conservation
            status of koala populations in south-east Queensland is uncertain, as the
            region is currently experiencing one of the fastest rates of urbanisation in
            Australia.

            The demand for future urban development in south-east Queensland
            continues to threaten koala populations through loss of habitat and
            increased levels of human-induced mortality. Mortality associated with
            roads and domestic dogs accounts for several hundred koalas each year
            (Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service unpublished data). While this is
            significant, it is recognised that habitat loss is the principal koala
            conservation issue in the region (Thompson 2001). To ensure that koala
            populations in south-east Queensland are conserved, mechanisms need to
            be put in place to ensure that important koala habitat areas are protected.

            A significant koala population occurs in Pine Rivers Shire, about 25km
            north of Brisbane, south-east Queensland (see section 1.2.1). The Shire has
            an estimated 120,000 residents, likely to exceed 150,000 in the next 10
            years (Pine Rivers Shire Council Planning Information and Forecasting Unit
            unpublished data). To conserve koalas in the Shire, the process of future
            urban planning should include an assessment of the conservation needs of
            the regional koala population.




1.2   The development of the Pine Rivers Koala Project

            In 1995 the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) implemented a
            comprehensive koala management program known as the Koala Coast
            Protection Plan in the Koala Coast (Thompson 2001). The Koala Coast is
            approximately 20km south-east of Brisbane and includes parts of three
            local government areas: Redland Shire, Brisbane and Logan Cities. An
            important component of the Koala Coast Protection Plan was to implement
            a research program investigating various aspects of koala ecology to
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                 2

            determine the long-term conservation requirements of the regional koala
            population. Because information regarding the distribution and abundance
            of a species is often a prerequisite to its effective management (Caughley
            and Sinclair 1994), a regional koala survey (Dique et al. 2001) became the
            initial focus of the research program in the Koala Coast.

            The well-publicised Koala Coast research program triggered negotiations
            between the Queensland Government, the Pine Rivers Shire Council and the
            Pine Rivers Koala Care Association in 2000 to conduct a similar research
            program in Pine Rivers Shire. This led to the start of the Pine Rivers Koala
            Project in 2001. As with the Koala Coast research program, an important
            component of the Pine Rivers Koala Project was to determine the
            distribution and abundance of the Pine Rivers Shire koala population. A
            regional koala survey commenced in July 2001.




1.2.1   Location and description of Pine Rivers Shire

            Pine Rivers Shire is situated 25km north of Brisbane in south-east
            Queensland (Fig. 1.1) and encompasses an area of approximately 77,000ha.
            Two major rivers flow through the Shire, the North and South Pine Rivers.
            The large catchment of the two rivers has provided for the establishment of
            two large water reservoirs, Lake Kurwongbah and Lake Samsonvale,
            covering a combined area of approximately 2,300ha. Toward the western
            part of the Shire, the D’Aguilar Range, a spur of the Great Dividing Range,
            stretches from the northern to the southern boundary of the Shire. Eucalypt
            forests cover much of the range, with some of the wetter and more
            protected gullies supporting rainforest communities. The eastern part of the
            Shire is heavily urbanised, with approximately 5000ha currently developed.
            Between the D’Aguilar Range and the urban parts of the Shire is a mixture
            of eucalypt remnant patches, acreage properties, small villages and farm
            areas on cleared fertile flats.

            The majority of the remnant vegetation is dominated by tall open forest
            and open forest and woodland communities typically consisting of
            Corymbia citriodora, Eucalyptus fibrosa subsp. fibrosa, E. tereticornis, E.
            moluccana, E. siderophloia, E. racemosa and E. tindaliae (Sattler and
            Williams 1999).
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                        3




            Fig. 1.1 Location of Pine Rivers Shire in relation to Brisbane and the Koala Coast




1.3   Project aims and report structure

            The principal objective of the Pine Rivers Koala Project was to develop
            planning and management measures to sustain viable free ranging koala
            populations in Pine Rivers Shire. To achieve this, the location of important
            koala populations and habitat areas needed to be identified. Therefore, the
            specific aims of the project were to:

                •    conduct a regional koala survey to determine the distribution,
                     abundance and status of koala populations across the Pine Rivers
                     Shire; and

                •    identify important koala habitat areas and develop management
                     objectives and planning guidelines to be incorporated into the Pine
                     Rivers Shire Planning Scheme to conserve koala habitat areas.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                  4

            This report has been prepared in two parts with each part addressing one
            project aim. The first part contains information regarding the distribution,
            abundance and status of koalas in Pine Rivers Shire determined from a
            regional koala survey and data contained within the QPWS koala database
            (section 2). Based on this information, the second part identifies important
            koala habitat areas and provides information regarding the planning and
            management measures that may be incorporated into the Pine Rivers Shire
            Planning Scheme to conserve important koala habitat areas (section 3).
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                 5




2. Koala distribution, abundance and status


2.1   Introduction

            Knowledge of the distribution and abundance of a population is a vital
            prerequisite to managing it effectively (Caughley and Sinclair 1994). To
            obtain this information for a particular species, often surveys need to be
            conducted. In designing a survey, it is important to consider whether an
            estimate of absolute abundance (actual population size) is required or
            whether an index (a number proportional to population size) will suffice
            (McCallum 2000). An index is useful for identifying population change over
            time but there are often difficulties in determining the relationship between
            the index and actual abundance.

            Many techniques are available for determining the distribution and
            abundance of koala populations: community response surveys, koala faecal
            pellet surveys and koala surveys. Koala distribution is often mapped from
            community-response surveys (Phillips 1990; Patterson 1996; Lunney et al.
            2001; Curtin et al. 2002). Koala faecal pellet surveys have been used to
            provide an index of koala abundance in one study (Sullivan 2000).
            However, historically koala researchers have preferred to estimate absolute
            abundance from koala surveys as survey results are more readily interpreted
            and additional information regarding the sex, health and reproductive
            status can often be obtained from sighting animals.




2.2   Estimating koala distribution and abundance

            Searching transects with fixed boundaries during the day is the technique
            most commonly used for estimating absolute abundance of koala
            populations (Mitchell et al. 1988; Gordon et al. 1990; White and Kunst
            1990; Melzer 1995; Dique et al. 2001) while mark-resight estimates
            (Hasegawa 1995) and spotlight surveys (Smith and Andrews 1997) are less
            commonly used. To derive accurate and precise estimates of koala density
            using strip transects a large number of observers are required, particularly if
            the surveys are to be conducted over a large area (Dique et al. 2001).
            Distance sampling using line transects (Buckland et al. 1993) provides an
            alternative sampling technique and requires fewer observers. While distance
            sampling has not been previously used for determining koala abundance it
            has been used extensively in estimating macropod abundance (e.g.
            Southwell 1994; Clancy et al. 1997; le Mar et al. 2001).
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                              6

            Distance sampling using line transects is based on the measurement of the
            perpendicular distance from the line to the animal sighted. Assuming that
            the observers carrying out the survey are experienced in observing the
            particular animal in question and that virtually all animals are detected on
            the line, then the accurate measurement of the perpendicular distance of
            detected animals from the line of known length allows density, and hence
            abundance, to be computed (Buckland et al. 1993). The advantages of line
            transect sampling over strip transect sampling is that fewer experienced
            observers are required and changes in sightability can be accommodated (le
            Mar et al. 2001). While evasive movement in response to the observer is
            often a problem when conducting line transect surveys (Buckland et al.
            1993), the sedentary nature and roosting behaviour of koalas during the
            day make them a suitable species for using line transect sampling for
            estimating abundance.

            An estimate of koala abundance in Pine Rivers Shire was derived from
            density estimates obtained at a number of sites across the Shire using line
            transect sampling and total counts. Evaluation of the line transect sampling
            methodology for estimating koala abundance, based on the research work
            conducted during the Pine Rivers Koala Project, has been published in
            Wildlife Research. A full copy of this paper is provided as an appendix
            (section 5.2). The following sections of this report provide a summarised
            account of the line transect survey method for estimating koala abundance.
            If more detail is required, particularly with regard to analysis of distance
            data for estimating density, refer to section 5.2.




2.2.1   Stratification and survey methodology

            Koala habitat across the Pine Rivers Shire was stratified into two broad
            habitat types - urban and bushland. Surveys were conducted at eight urban
            sites (numbered 1-8) and 14 bushland sites (numbered 9-22) (Fig. 2.1).
            Sites were selected in bushland habitat from large tracts of remnant
            vegetation and isolated bushland remnants to ensure an adequate
            geographical spread of sites across the Shire. Each site selected in urban
            habitat consisted of medium density housing with remnant eucalypts and
            areas of parkland that contained some remnant eucalypt vegetation. Koala
            abundance for bushland and urban habitat was estimated from data
            obtained from two different survey methods.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                          7




            Fig. 2.1 Map of Pine Rivers Shire with the location of survey sites labelled by site
            number (sites 1-8 urban sites and sites 9-22 bushland sites)




            Bushland koala surveys – line transect sampling

            Surveys of bushland sites were conducted during September 2001. Within
            the bushland sites, a total of 134 line transects were established. Transect
            lines were walked by two experienced observers in a single direction
            perpendicular to the grain of the topography from a starting point on a
            road, track or site boundary. One observer (the navigator) used a compass
            to strictly navigate the line and searched on and near the line while the
            second observer was free to move a few metres either side of each line.
            Careful attention was paid to searching trees on and near the line by both
            observers. This search protocol was designed to ensure that the probability
            of sighting a koala on the line was one (see Buckland et al. 1993).

            From the starting point of the line, observers would search for about one
            hour and take a GPS location to locate the end of the line. This location
            would then become the start of a 150m spacer line and was perpendicular
            to the starting line. A third line starting from the end of the 150m spacer
            line was then searched in the opposite direction from the starting line. This
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                               8

            method enabled observers to search for approximately two hours and return
            to a vehicle on a road or track reducing the amount of travel time between
            transects and maximising the search time at each site. Except for the 150m
            spacer transects, transect lengths varied with patch size and shape, forest
            structure and terrain.

            When a koala was detected, the perpendicular distance was measured using
            a 50m measuring tape to the nearest tenth of a metre from the line to the
            point vertically below the koala. The tree species, height and diameter at
            breast height (DBH) of the tree the koala was located in were recorded. The
            sex, disease and reproductive status of the animal were also recorded.
            Surveys were not conducted in periods of rain.



            Urban koala surveys – total counts

            Surveys of urban sites were conducted in September and October 2001. The
            urban sites ranged from 26ha to 51ha in size. One week prior to the survey
            date a letter outlining the date and time of the survey was distributed to all
            households within each survey site. The letter informed households of the
            aims of the survey and stated that observers would ask for permission to
            search all trees on the property on the survey day to ensure that a total
            count was conducted at each site. A small proportion of land owners denied
            access to observers. These properties were not included in the total area of
            the site searched. When a koala was sighted the tree species, koala sex,
            disease and reproductive status were recorded. Surveys were not conducted
            in periods of rain.




2.2.2   Estimating regional koala abundance

            Pine Rivers Shire was divided into a series of polygons based on suburb
            boundaries. The polygons were categorised into two classes, urban and
            bushland. For each bushland polygon, the area of remnant eucalypt
            vegetation was calculated in hectares using ArcView GIS software
            (Environmental Systems Research Institute 1999) and based on regional
            ecosystem mapping (provided by Pine Rivers Shire Council). The density
            estimate for each site was then extrapolated across the remnant eucalypt
            vegetation for each polygon such that an estimate of koala abundance for
            each polygon was obtained. For those bushland polygons that did not
            contain a sampling site, the mean density from surrounding sites was used
            to calculate abundance.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                                           9

                                     For each urban polygon, the area of the polygon was calculated in hectares
                                     using ArcView GIS software (Environmental Systems Research Institute
                                     1999). Density estimates from urban areas differed to those from bushland
                                     areas in that they were an estimate of koala density in an urban matrix of
                                     housing, parklands and schools while bushland surveys produced density
                                     estimates for bushland only. To determine koala abundance in urban areas,
                                     the estimated density for each site was extrapolated across the entire
                                     polygon represented by each site. For urban polygons that did not contain
                                     an urban survey site, density was estimated from the relationship between
                                     koala density and the mean annual number of koala reports received by
                                     QPWS from 1997-2000 illustrated by Fig. 2.2.



                              0.35


                               0.3


                                                                                  R2 = 0.6212
    Estimated Koala Density




                              0.25


                               0.2


                              0.15


                               0.1


                              0.05


                                0
                                     0           10           20            30            40           50               60
                                                          Mean No. of Reports to QPWS (1997-2000)



                                     Fig. 2.2 Relationship between the mean annual number of koalas reported to QPWS
                                     for seven Pine Rivers Shire urban suburbs from 1997-2000 and the estimated koala
                                     densities from urban koala surveys for the respective urban suburbs




2.2.3                         Results of koala surveys



                                     Bushland koala surveys

                                     During the bushland surveys, a total of 82 independent koalas were sighted
                                     from 134 lines (total length 64km). Estimates of koala density ranged from
                                     0 to 0.79 koalas/ha (Fig. 2.3). Although estimates of zero were calculated
                                     for three of the 14 sites, evidence of koalas including scratch marks on trees
                                     and faecal pellets below trees were found at each of the three sites. This
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                                           10

                                  suggests that koalas frequented the area and that an increase in sampling
                                  effort may have revealed a relatively low koala density. For this reason the
                                  estimate of koala abundance for the Pine Rivers Shire would be considered
                                  to be conservative.

                                  The bushland within Pine Rivers Shire provides habitat for the majority of
                                  the Shire’s koala population, particularly in areas associated with the
                                  catchments of Lake Kurwongbah and Lake Samsonvale. It is likely that the
                                  conservation of koalas in the Shire is dependent on the adequate protection
                                  of bushland areas that contain high densities of koalas in the vicinity of the
                                  two lakes.



                           1.00

                           0.90

                           0.80

                           0.70
 Estimated koala density




                           0.60

                           0.50

                           0.40

                           0.30

                           0.20

                           0.10

                           0.00
                                   13    18    21    15    10     12    20    11    14    17    16    19    22     9


                                                                Bushland site number




                                  Fig. 2.3 Estimated koala density (koalas/ha) at the 14 bushland sites with 95 percent
                                  confidence limits as calculated by DISTANCE (Laake et al. 1993 – see section 5.2)




                                  Urban koala surveys

                                  A total of 58 independent koalas were detected during urban surveys at the
                                  eight urban sites. Estimates of koala density at these sites are illustrated in
                                  Fig. 2.4. The density estimates ranged from 0.06 to 0.42 koalas/ha. These
                                  results indicate that significant koala populations exist in residential areas
                                  of Pine Rivers Shire as well as bushland areas. Some urban areas have
                                  higher koala densities than some bushland areas, particularly suburbs such
                                  as Whiteside and Petrie. The effective management of koalas in high
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                                       11

                                   density urban areas is likely to contribute to the conservation of koalas in
                                   the region.



                            0.45

                            0.40

                            0.35
  Estimated koala density




                            0.30

                            0.25

                            0.20

                            0.15

                            0.10

                            0.05

                            0.00
                                       7          4          3          1          5          2        6    8

                                                                   Urban site number



                                   Fig. 2.4 Estimated koala density (koalas/ha) at eight urban sites




                                   Regional koala population size

                                   The size of the Pine Rivers Shire koala population was estimated at
                                   approximately 4600 adult individuals (range approximately 4000-5200) and
                                   was calculated as the sum of abundance estimates for each suburb or
                                   abundance polygon (see section 5.1 for koala abundance estimates for each
                                   suburb within Pine Rivers Shire). This estimate is regarded as an
                                   underestimate given that across the Shire a significant area of scattered
                                   trees in semi-rural and rural areas would provide habitat for koalas, but was
                                   not included in calculations of abundance. Also, a number of polygons in
                                   the south of the Shire recorded abundance estimates of zero despite
                                   evidence of koalas (scratch marks on trees and faecal pellets) found during
                                   surveys. Moreover, it is known from surveys in the Koala Coast that a small
                                   proportion of koalas remain undetected during surveys of areas with fixed
                                   boundaries (Dique et al. 2001).
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                              12

2.3     Status of Pine Rivers koala population

             The reproductive and disease status and causes of mortality of the Pine
             Rivers Shire koala population was determined from incidental data stored in
             the QPWS koala database. The QPWS koala database stores data sourced
             from public reports of healthy, sick and injured koalas from south-east
             Queensland. The status of the koala population in Pine Rivers Shire was
             assessed by collating data on sex ratios, disease status, reproductive status
             and causes of admission to the Moggill Koala Hospital obtained from koala
             surveys and the QPWS koala database.




2.3.1    Sources of data



             QPWS koala database

             The QPWS koala database is managed by the Moggill Koala Hospital, a
             QPWS koala rehabilitation facility. For each koala report the cause of
             admission, sex, disease status and reproductive status, among other things,
             were recorded. Data were collated for four years from 1997-2000 and then
             compared to similar data collected during the koala surveys reported in
             section 2.

             As the Moggill Koala Hospital is a facility designed to rehabilitate sick and
             injured koalas, it would be expected that records of admissions to the
             hospital would be biased toward animals showing signs of disease. To
             ensure data from a random sample of koala records were used to compare
             against data obtained from koala surveys, records contained within the
             QPWS koala database - as a result of being hit by a car or attacked by a
             domestic dog - were selected. Unpublished data from research conducted in
             the Koala Coast by the Koala Research Unit suggests koalas hit by cars and
             attacked by domestic dogs occur at random, favouring neither healthy nor
             diseased koalas.

             A total of 936 reports of koalas (including sightings of healthy individuals)
             in the Pine Rivers Shire are documented in the QPWS koala database
             between 1997 and 2000 inclusive. The mean number of koala reports a year
             over the four years was 234. Where possible these data were analysed and
             compared to data obtained from koala surveys from Pine Rivers and also
             data from koala populations in the Koala Coast.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                  13

2.3.2   Sex ratios, reproductive and disease status



            Sex ratios

            Where possible during the bushland and urban surveys the sex of each
            koala was determined. This allowed comparisons to be made with the sex of
            koalas reported to QPWS when hit by cars or attacked by dogs (Table 2.1).
            There is no significant difference in the sex ratios of koalas sighted during
            bushland and urban surveys (chi-squared = 0.89, P = 0.35) and there is no
            significant difference from parity for the sex ratio data from bushland
            surveys (G-test, G = 0.013, P>0.9) and from urban surveys (G-test, G =
            1.66, 0.5>P>0.1). However, a comparison of the sex of koalas reported to
            QPWS when attacked by dogs or hit by cars suggested that there was a
            significant bias towards the proportion of male koalas that were hit by cars
            (G-test, G = 12.59, P<0.005) while the sex ratio of koalas attacked by dogs
            approximated parity.


            Table 2.1 Sex ratios of independent koalas, expressed as a percentage, detected
            during bushland and urban surveys and those recorded in the QPWS koala database
            (the sex was recorded for 265 koalas hit by cars or attacked by domestic dogs and
            reported to QPWS during 1997-2000)



                            Bushland         Urban                     QPWS data
                             surveys        surveys
                                                           dog attacks          car hits
               Male           49.4            40.8              50.0               63.8
              Female          50.6            59.2              50.0               36.2
                n              79              49               102                163




            Reproductive status

            The presence of back or pouch young was also noted for female koalas
            detected during bushland and urban surveys. A chi-squared test revealed
            that there was no significant difference between the proportion of female
            koalas with young in bushland and urban areas (chi-square = 2.34, P =
            0.13). However, more females without young were attacked by domestic
            dogs and hit by cars than would be expected by chance (chi-square =
            11.30, P<0.005) (Table 2.2). It is recognised that koala mortality increases
            during the breeding season as male and female koala activity heightens
            (Nattrass and Fiedler 1996). Throughout the breeding season, females
            without young may be more active than females with young and may partly
            explain why more females without young die as a result of domestic dog
            attacks and car hits.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                      14

            Table 2.2 Reproductive status of females, expressed as a percentage, detected
            during the bushland and urban surveys and recorded in the QPWS koala database
            (reproductive status was recorded for 110 female koalas hit by cars or attacked by
            domestic dogs and reported to QPWS during 1997-2000)



                                    Bushland         Urban              QPWS data
                                     surveys        surveys       dog attacks and car hits
               With young              60.0           41.4                     27.3

              Without young            40.0           58.8                     72.7
                      n                 40             29                      110




            Disease status

            All koalas detected during surveys were examined for signs of disease using
            binoculars. Signs of disease were noted for the Chlamydia related symptoms
            conjunctivitis and cystitis. If the koala was hidden in foliage and a view of
            the koalas tail and eyes were obstructed then its disease status was noted as
            undetermined.

            A large proportion of koalas sighted during the surveys showed no signs of
            disease (Table 2.3). A chi-squared test revealed there was no significant
            difference in the disease status of koalas in bushland areas and urban areas
            from the koala survey data (chi-squared = 1.07, P = 0.30). A comparison of
            the disease status of koalas detected during surveys (pooled bushland and
            urban survey data) and the disease status of koalas hit by cars or attacked
            by domestic dogs recorded in the QPWS koala database suggests both
            measures of the disease status of the population are similar (chi-squared =
            2.61, P = 0.11) (Table 2.3).


            Table 2.3 The proportion of independent koalas showing signs of conjunctivitis and
            cystitis (diseased), expressed as a percentage, from data collected from koala surveys
            and from incidental data contained in the QPWS koala database (the disease status
            was determined for 265 koalas hit by cars or attacked by domestic dogs and
            reported to QPWS during 1997-2000)



                                  Bushland           Urban              QPWS data
                                   surveys          surveys       dog attacks and car hits
                Diseased              7.4             12.7                      5.3
              Not diseased            92.6            87.3                     94.7
                     n                 81              55                      265
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                               15

2.3.3   Causes of admission to Moggill Koala Hospital

            A total of 936 koala reports were received by QPWS from Pine Rivers Shire
            from 1997-2000. The numbers of reports have increased slowly from 1997
            to 1999 (1997 - 166 reports, 1998 - 184 reports, 1999 - 201 reports) with
            a large increase in 2000 (385 reports). The majority of reports of sick koalas
            include animals showing clinical signs of the Chlamydia-related symptoms
            conjunctivitis and cystitis. The majority of reports of injured koalas included
            koalas hit by cars or attacked by domestic dogs. Fewer than 15 percent of
            injured koalas survived their injuries.

            The number of koalas reported as healthy, diseased or associated with car
            hits or domestic dog attacks is provided in Fig. 2.5. The largest number of
            reports for all years is for sightings of healthy koalas. Car hits and dog
            attacks are the next major reasons for reporting with disease being reported
            least frequently, except in 2000. Other reasons for reporting koalas to
            QPWS include koalas falling from trees, pool associated deaths, train hits
            and wasting as a result of old age. These are not shown in Fig. 2.5 as the
            figures combined account for about 15 percent of the total number of
            reports each year and are consistent across all years.

            The number of healthy reports indicates a relatively healthy koala
            population exists in Pine Rivers Shire. However, the large proportion of
            reports for koalas hit by cars or attacked by domestic dogs is of particular
            concern for two reasons. One, they account for approximately one third of
            all reports to QPWS from Pine Rivers Shire and two, they may
            underestimate the actual number of koalas hit by cars or attacked by
            domestic dogs by approximately 30-40 percent (Koala Research Unit
            unpublished data). The impact of koala mortality associated with roads and
            domestic dogs has the potential to have a significant impact on koalas that
            are located in heavily urbanised areas in the Shire.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                                               16




                                    180

                                    160
                                                         Dog attack
                                    140                  Car hit
        Number of reports to QPWS



                                                         Diseased
                                    120                  Healthy

                                    100

                                     80

                                     60

                                     40

                                     20

                                      0
                                                  1997                1998                 1999                2000

                                                                                Year




                                          Fig. 2.5 The number of reports from Pine Rivers Shire received by QPWS from 1997-
                                          2000 for koalas attacked by domestic dogs, hit by cars, showed clinical signs of
                                          disease and were healthy




2.4                     Comparisons with other regional koala populations



2.4.1                               Population density

                                          Repeated koala surveys have been conducted at 27 sites in the Koala Coast
                                          by the Koala Research Unit (Dique et al. 2001; koala research Unit
                                          unpublished data). Koala densities from a large proportion of bushland and
                                          urban sites toward the centre of Pine Rivers are comparable to densities
                                          observed at sites in the Koala Coast. The estimated densities in the Koala
                                          Coast ranged from 0.05 to 1.26 koalas/ha. The densities observed in Pine
                                          Rivers ranged from 0 to 0.79 koalas/ha. White and Kunst (1990) observed
                                          an average koala density of 0.4 koalas ha at their site in the Koala Coast.
                                          Hasegawa (1995) reported a koala density greater than two koalas/ha at
                                          one site in the Koala Coast, but recent surveys by the Koala Research Unit
                                          suggest that koala density at that site has declined to about 1.2 koalas/ha.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                              17

            The majority of eucalypt vegetation toward the western part of Pine Rivers
            Shire appears to contain relatively low koala densities (generally less than
            0.1 koalas/ha) with higher densities associated with eucalypt vegetation and
            urban areas near Lake Kurwongbah and Lake Samsonvale. In relative terms,
            there are fewer locations in the Koala Coast that contain koala densities less
            than 0.1 koalas/ha.




2.4.2   Population health



            Sex ratios

            The sex ratios reported here do not differ from parity. The lower proportion
            of males in urban areas (although not statistically different) may be a result
            of increased mortality of male koalas due to car hits. Almost 64 percent of
            koalas hit by cars were male (Table 2.1). Unpublished data from the Koala
            Research Unit suggests in Redland Shire (part of the Koala Coast) a
            disproportionate number of young male koalas were hit by cars. This was
            probably related to koala dispersal. Although the impact of removing young
            males on the population of koalas in Pine Rivers Shire is unknown, it is an
            issue of concern and is discussed in section 3 in more detail.



            Reproductive status

            Of the 69 independent female koalas sighted during the surveys about half
            (52 percent) showed signs of having pouch or back young (Table 2.2).
            White and Kunst (1990) found that at their study site in the Redland Shire
            between 58-67 percent of independent females produced young in the
            breeding season, which is similar to the reproductive rate of female koalas
            in the Pine Rivers Shire.



            Disease status

            Information outlined in sections 2.3.2 and 2.3.3 from the bushland and
            urban koala surveys and the QPWS koala database suggest that the regional
            koala population in Pine Rivers is extremely healthy compared to other
            populations in south-east Queensland, particularly the koala population
            that exists in the Koala Coast, south-east of Brisbane. Sightings of
            independent koalas provided to QPWS from Redland Shire in 1999 suggest
            that approximately 30 percent of records were for koalas showing signs of
            disease (Jones and Carter 2000). For koalas hit by cars and attacked by
            dogs, approximately 28 percent showed signs of disease (Jones and Carter
            2000). From a total of 62 koalas captured from three sites in Redland Shire
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                 18

            in 1996, 14 or 23 percent showed signs of disease (Thompson 2001). Data
            from surveys and the QPWS koala database suggest that only 5.3-12.1
            percent of koalas showed signs of disease in Pine Rivers Shire (Table 2.3).
            This suggests a low rate of disease exists in the Pine Rivers Shire koala
            population when compared to the Redland Shire koala population.




2.5   Overview of regional koala population in Pine Rivers

            Regardless of why the differences and similarities between Koala Coast and
            Pine Rivers Shire koala populations may occur, the Pine Rivers koala
            population is a significant, healthy and robust population. It is a large
            population in its own right and is also part of a larger population that
            extends outside the boundaries of the Shire. However, continued removal of
            eucalypt vegetation and the high levels of mortality associated with roads
            and domestic dogs threaten the persistence of the population, particularly
            in urban areas. The future conservation of koalas in Pine Rivers Shire is
            dependent upon the:

             •    inclusion of koala planning and management measures in future Pine
                  Rivers Shire planning schemes;

             •    development and implementation of a strategic revegetation plan;

             •    development and implementation of public education campaigns; and

             •    continued monitoring of the regional koala population.

             Further detail and discussion of these issues are detailed in section 3 of
             this report.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                             19




3. Planning and management guidelines


3.1   Introduction

            The National Koala Conservation Strategy (Australia and New Zealand
            Environment and Conservation Council 1998) suggests koala conservation
            and management is complex as many koala populations are subject to a
            variety of threatening processes across different regions. A regional
            approach to koala conservation and management is then required, in
            collaboration with local government authorities (Patterson 1992), to
            account for national and statewide management complexities. Indeed, a
            number of koala management plans have been developed for local and
            regional koala populations including Iluka (Lunney et al. 1996), Coffs
            Harbour (Lunney et al. 1998) and Pine Rivers Shire (Carrick 1994). These
            documents highlight the importance of habitat protection for koala
            conservation, but in addition provide recommendations for managing a
            number of local issues.

            The Koala Management Strategy for Pine Rivers Shire (Carrick 1994)
            provides clear direction for conserving wild koala populations in Pine Rivers
            by recommending that koala management programs focus on reservation of
            habitat, reduction of threatening processes, continued research, restoration
            of habitat and rehabilitation of orphaned, sick and injured koalas. The
            strategy also details the importance of obtaining information regarding the
            distribution and abundance of koalas in the region and obtaining a greater
            understanding of the threats to koalas from cars and domestic dogs (Carrick
            1994) as is addressed by section 2 of this report. However, the conservation
            and management dilemma is to translate this information into planning
            outcomes to ensure that future development within Pine Rivers Shire
            accommodates the conservation requirements of the regional koala
            population.

            This section of the report aims to achieve this by classifying Pine Rivers
            Shire into different koala conservation zones according to the significance
            of different areas to koalas and is based on the information obtained from
            koala surveys by the Koala Research Unit and the QPWS koala database
            (section 2). The management objectives and specific planning guidelines for
            each conservation zone are also detailed to ensure that the significance of
            each conservation zone is not compromised by future development.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                 20

3.2   Koala conservation zones

            Koala conservation zones were identified for both urban and non-urban
            areas within the Shire, as it is recognised that there are differences in the
            conservation status and management of koala populations within urban
            and non-urban areas. For the purposes of this section of the report, urban
            areas are defined as areas that contain medium to high density housing
            with remnant eucalypts and areas of parkland that contain small patches of
            remnant eucalypt vegetation. Non-urban areas are defined as areas that
            contain low density housing associated with some remnant patches of
            eucalypt vegetation, large tracts of relatively undisturbed remnant eucalypt
            vegetation and areas that have been extensively cleared for agriculture.

            Within the urban and non-urban categories, three conservation zones have
            been identified (Table 3.1). The determination of these zones incorporated
            koala distribution information, information from koala sightings provided
            to QPWS by the Pine Rivers Shire community and regional ecosystem
            vegetation mapping (pre-clearing and remnant vegetation) provided by the
            Pine Rivers Shire Council. Table 3.1 provides a brief description of how each
            koala conservation zone was classified and Table 3.2 provides a description
            of each koala conservation zone. Fig. 3.1 provides a geographical
            representation of the conservation status of koalas in the Shire and
            identifies the distribution of the koala conservation zones. The
            management objectives and related planning guidelines for each koala
            conservation zone are discussed in sections 3.3 and 3.4.


            Table 3.1 Classification of koala conservation zones in Pine Rivers Shire


                 Koala               Non-urban areas                      Urban areas
              conservation                 1                                  2
                 zone
                                 High density koala              High density koala
                     A           populations and includes        populations with some
                                 large areas of eucalypt         remnant eucalypt
                                 vegetation of significant       vegetation frequently used
                                 value to koalas                 by koalas
                                 Medium density koala            Medium density koala
                     B           populations and includes        populations with some
                                 areas of eucalypt               remnant eucalypt
                                 vegetation of significant       vegetation frequently used
                                 value to koalas                 by koalas
                                 Low density koala               Low density koala
                     C           populations and includes        populations, isolated from
                                 large areas of eucalypt         high density populations,
                                 vegetation of some value        with some areas of eucalypt
                                 to koala populations            vegetation that are not
                                                                 frequently used by koalas
          Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                                            21




               471000     476000        481000   486000         491000           496000         501000        506000         511000
7009000




                                                                                                                                      7009000
7004000




                                                                                                                                      7004000
6999000




                                                                                                                                      6999000
6994000




                                                                                                                                      6994000
                                                                1B
6989000




                                                                                                                                      6989000
                                                                                           1B

                                                  1B                     1A                              2C
6984000




                                                                                                                                      6984000
                                                               Lak                    2A                       Mgv
                                1C

                                                                                           2B
6979000




                                                                                                                                      6979000
                                                                         1B
6974000




                                                                                                                                      6974000
                                                                                 2C
6969000




                                                                                                                                      6969000
6964000




                                                                                                                                      6964000




               471000     476000        481000   486000         491000           496000         501000        506000         511000

                                                   0   1   2    4    6        8 km
          Conservation Zones
          Non-urban            Urban             Other
                1A                     2A                      Lake Samsonvale &
                                                           Lak Lake Kurwongbah
                1B                     2B                                                                Pine Rivers Shire
                                                               Mangrove or other
                                                           Mgv vegetation on marine deposits
                1C                     2C




                        Fig. 3.1 Koala conservation zones in Pine Rivers Shire
          Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                                     22




              471000    476000     481000      486000         491000           496000         501000        506000    511000
7009000




                                                                                                                               7009000
7004000




                                                                                                                               7004000
6999000




                                                                                                                               6999000
6994000




                                                                                                                               6994000
                                                              1B
6989000




                                                                                                                               6989000
                                                                                         1B

                                                1B                     1A                              2C
6984000




                                                                                                                               6984000
                                                             Lak                    2A                       Mgv
                             1C

                                                                                         2B
6979000




                                                                                                                               6979000
                                                                       1B
6974000




                                                                                                                               6974000
                                                                               2C
6969000




                                                                                                                               6969000
6964000




                                                                                                                               6964000




              471000    476000     481000      486000         491000           496000         501000        506000    511000

                                                 0   1   2    4    6        8 km




                                                                                                  Pine Rivers Shire




                       Fig. 3.2 Satellite image of Pine Rivers Shire and the koala conservation zones 1A, 2A
                       etc. as identified by Fig. 3.1
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                       23

            Table 3.2 A description of the koala conservation zones identified in Pine Rivers



  Koala conservation                                  Description
         zone
                         Area of highest koala conservation value. Large areas of
          1A             remnant eucalypt vegetation containing many eucalypt species
                         that are used by koalas for food and shelter. Some
                         fragmentation and relatively low intensity human habitation.
                         Highest koala densities in the Shire 0.4-0.8 koalas/ha.
                         Area of high koala conservation value. Large areas of remnant
          1B             eucalypt vegetation containing many eucalypt species that are
                         used by koalas for food and shelter. Some fragmentation and
                         relatively low intensity human inhabitation. Medium koala
                         densities 0.2-0.4 koalas/ha.
                         Area of high koala conservation value owing to the large
          1C             amount of remnant eucalypt vegetation in this zone. More
                         than 50 percent of vegetation in the Shire occurs in 1C and
                         almost one third of the Shires koala population. More fertile
                         valley flats are used extensively for agriculture. Low koala
                         densities, less than 0.2 koalas/ha.
                         Area of high koala conservation value. High density urban
          2A             development with important scattered eucalypts in house lots,
                         parks and creek lines and some important remnants of
                         eucalypt vegetation. The conservation value of this zone is
                         high as it provides an opportunity for individual and genetic
                         movement from 1A to 2B conservation zones. Highest koala
                         densities in urban areas 0.2-0.4 koalas/ha. Human-induced
                         koala mortality is a significant issue in this zone.
                         Area of medium koala conservation value. Medium to high
          2B             density urban development with important scattered eucalypts
                         in house lots, parks and creek lines and some important
                         remnants of eucalypt vegetation. Medium urban koala
                         densities 0.1-0.2 koalas/ha. Human-induced koala mortality is
                         a significant issue in this zone.
                         Area of low koala conservation value. Medium to high density
          2C             urban development with important scattered eucalypts in
                         house lots, parks and creek lines and some important remnants
                         of eucalypt vegetation. Low koala densities <0.1 koalas/ha.
                         Low koala conservation value owing to its relative isolation
                         from koala populations in other areas. Human-induced koala
                         mortality is a significant issue in this zone.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                              24


            Conservation zone 1A (Table 3.2) is regarded as the most critical for koala
            conservation in the Pine Rivers Shire. The majority of the remnant eucalypt
            vegetation in conservation zone 1A is within the Lake Kurwongbah
            catchment and is subsequently currently protected by tree preservation
            orders. It is recommended that the tree preservation orders remain in place
            for Lake Kurwongbah catchment and be extended where necessary to
            include any remnant eucalypt vegetation within conservation zone 1A that
            may not be within the catchment area.




3.3   Koala management objectives

            The management strategies recently employed by wildlife managers and
            planners in Queensland and New South Wales for the conservation of a
            number of different koala populations and habitats share similar principles
            and objectives. Rowland (2002) reviewed koala management documents in
            Queensland and New South Wales and identified eight key elements for
            conserving koalas in areas where urban expansion threatens existing
            populations. These were:

                •   Minimal development in important koala habitat areas

                •   Protection and enhancement of koala habitat links

                •   Provision of effective interface areas (vegetation buffers) between
                    urban development and koala habitat

                •   Minimise expansion of urban development in significant koala
                    habitat areas

                •   Minimise vegetation clearing in koala habitat, while recognising
                    the need to reduce bushfire hazards

                •   Minimise development hazards for koalas (e.g. fences, pools)

                •   Minimise interaction between dogs and koalas

                •   Minimise vehicle intrusion, traffic volume and speed

            While these management issues appear relatively consistent across a
            number of different regions where koalas occur, specific management
            objectives and planning guidelines need to be developed for specific regions
            or localities (Rowland 2002). For Pine Rivers Shire, the list above can be
            summarised to identify two broad management objectives that include a
            number of key elements.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                             25


             Management objective 1

             Protect and enhance remnant eucalypt vegetation that contains koalas by:

                         •     minimising development

                         •     enhancing vegetation links

                         •     minimising vegetation clearing

                         •     incorporating fire management plans

             Management objective 2

             Minimise impacts on koalas associated with humans by:

                          •    minimising development hazards (e.g. fences, pools)

                          •    reducing domestic dog attacks

                          •    reducing road and traffic incidents

                          •    increasing public awareness of koala conservation issues

             To meet these two management objectives, specific planning guidelines
             have been proposed for each conservation zone and are detailed in section
             3.4.




3.4     Planning guidelines and management recommendations

             As detailed in section 3.2 the koala conservation zones describe the
             variation in significance to koalas of the different regions of Pine Rivers
             Shire. Maintaining or enhancing the value of each conservation zone can be
             achieved by developing specific planning guidelines to meet the two broad
             management objectives identified in section 3.3 for each conservation zone.




3.4.1    Planning guidelines

             The specific planning guidelines developed for Pine Rivers Shire are
             provided in Table 3.3. Additional detail for some of the recommendations in
             Table 3.3 including a revegetation plan for koalas, public education
             campaigns and existing and future road development is provided after
             Table 3.3. An Environmental Impact Study (EIS) should be a requirement
             for any development not affected by the proposed planning guidelines. The
             EIS process should address impacts on koalas.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                  26



               Table 3.3 Management objectives and recommended planning guidelines for koala
               conservation zones in Pine Rivers Shire



   Management                        Recommended planning guidelines
    objectives
 Koala conservation zone 1A
 Outcome: Retain remnant eucalypt vegetation and limit future development. Increase
 value of degraded eucalypt vegetation and improve eucalypt vegetation linkages.
 Protect and           •    New developments – minimum block size 20ha – cleared
 enhance                    area no greater than 1500m2 for house pad and should be
 remnant                    located at any pre-existing cleared areas – remaining
 vegetation                 eucalypt vegetation to remain undisturbed except for
                            boundary fire management as specified in Pine Rivers Shire
                            Planning Scheme
                       •    New developments in cleared areas – minimum block size
                            10ha and require development specific revegetation plan to
                            enhance the conservation value of the site – revegetation
                            plan to include species appropriate for the predominant
                            regional ecosystem type and include eucalypt planting at a
                            density of approximately 200-300 stems/ha – minimum of
                            30 percent of developed area to be revegetated
                       •    Public lands should be assessed and revegetated where
                            necessary as part of a revegetation plan developed by Pine
                            Rivers Shire Council (see section 3.4.2)
 Minimise              •    Covenants on new developments prohibiting dogs -
 impacts                    covenant to remain in force upon change of ownership of
 associated with            property
 humans                •    Owners of dogs in existing developments to be encouraged
                            to restrict dogs to house pad (1500m2) through incentives
                            (rate discounts) – owners need to demonstrate they have
                            enclosed dog yards and/or they restrain their dog at night
                       •    Fence design to allow for koala movement between large
                            bushland blocks – koala movement should not be impeded
                            by fences
                       •    No new road development – new roads to be constructed
                            when required in neighbouring conservation zones and
                            should avoid areas of eucalypt vegetation that are of
                            conservation significance to koalas
                       •    Road design for upgrades of existing roads should include
                            innovative design features to reduce traffic speed and
                            volume, investigate koala visibility issues and allow for
                            koala movement (see section 3.4.4)
                       •    Impact assessment of road upgrades to consider the impact
                            on koala movements and habitat areas (see section 3.4.4)
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                27


   Management                       Recommended planning guidelines
    objectives
 Koala conservation zone 1B
 Outcome: Retain remnant eucalypt vegetation and ensure that future development is
 compatible with current koala values. Increase value of degraded eucalypt vegetation
 and improve eucalypt vegetation linkages.
 Protect and          •     New developments – limit block size to 10ha – cleared area
 enhance                    no greater than 1500m2 for house pad and should be
 remnant                    located at any pre-existing cleared areas – remaining
 vegetation                 eucalypt vegetation to remain undisturbed except for
                            boundary fire management as specified in Pine Rivers Shire
                            Planning Scheme
                      •     New developments in cleared areas – minimum block size
                            2ha and require development specific revegetation plan to
                            enhance the conservation value of the site – revegetation
                            plan to include species appropriate for the predominant
                            regional ecosystem type and include eucalypt planting at a
                            density of approximately 200-300 stems/ha – minimum of
                            30 percent of developed area to be revegetated
                      •     Any public lands should be assessed and revegetated where
                            necessary as part of a revegetation plan developed by Pine
                            Rivers Shire Council (see section 3.4.2)
 Minimise             •     Dogs in new developments to be restrained during night
 impacts                    hours and restricted to house pad (1500m2)
 associated with      •     Fence design to allow for koala movement between large
 humans                     bushland blocks – koala movement should not be impeded
                            by fences
                      •     New and upgraded roads should include innovative design
                            to reduce traffic speed, volume, allow for koala movement
                            and avoid areas of eucalypt vegetation that are of
                            conservation significance to koalas (see section 3.4.4)
                      •     Impact assessment of new roads and road upgrades to
                            consider the impact on koala movements and habitat areas
 Koala conservation zone 1C
 Outcome: Retain eucalypt vegetation where possible and increase eucalypt
 vegetation linkages. Integrate koala conservation issues with existing agricultural
 practices.
 Protect and          •     Minimise further loss of eucalypt vegetation – application
 enhance                    for clearing to include clearing and revegetation plan to
 remnant                    enhance eucalypt vegetation links so that current koala
 vegetation                 populations can be supported and koala movement not
                            inhibited by tree clearing
 Minimise             •     Fences to allow for koala movement
 impacts
 associated with
 humans
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                  28


   Management                       Recommended planning guidelines
    objectives
 Koala conservation zone 2A
 Outcome: Enhance and maintain eucalypt vegetation linkages, including individual
 trees and increase value to koalas of green space. Reduce impact of dogs and cars on
 koalas as a priority. Increase public awareness of koala conservation issues.

 Protect and         •      New developments – minimum block size 2ha – cleared
 enhance                    area no greater than 1500m2 for house pad and should be
 remnant                    located at any pre-existing cleared areas – remaining
 vegetation                 eucalypt vegetation to remain undisturbed except for
                            boundary fire management as specified in Pine Rivers Shire
                            Planning Scheme
                     •      Enhance remnant eucalypt patches and current green
                            spaces to accommodate koala movement as part of a
                            revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers Shire Council
                            (see section 3.4.2)
                     •      Minimise impacts on creek systems and increase eucalypt
                            vegetation associated with creek systems where appropriate
                            as part of a revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers
                            Shire Council (see section 3.4.2)
                     •      Increase public awareness of value of eucalypt trees (as
                            individuals in urban blocks or remnant patches) for koalas
                            in urban areas as part of a public education campaign (see
                            section 3.4.3)


 Minimise            •      Covenants on new developments prohibiting dogs –
 impacts                    covenant to remain in force upon change of ownership of
 associated with            property
 humans              •      Restrain dogs at night and promote smaller less aggressive
                            breeds – rate discounts for dog owners who can
                            demonstrate dog restraint at night and registration of
                            larger dogs (greater than 15kg) significantly more expensive
                            than for smaller dogs
                     •      Provide koala conservation education kits to inform home
                            owners of koala conservation issues i.e. cars, dogs, habitat
                            loss etc. as part of a “living with koalas in urban areas of
                            Pine Rivers” education campaign (see section 3.4.3)
                     •      New and upgraded roads should include innovative design
                            elements associated with lighting, signage and koala
                            movement (see section 3.4.4)
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                   29


   Management                       Recommended planning guidelines
    objectives
 Koala conservation zone 2B
 Enhance and maintain eucalypt vegetation linkages, including individual trees and
 increase value to koalas of green space. Reduce impact of dogs and cars on koalas
 and increase public awareness of koala conservation issues.

 Protect and         •      New developments – minimum block size 0.5ha – cleared
 enhance                    area no greater than 1500m2 for house pad and should be
 remnant                    located at any pre-existing cleared areas – remaining
 vegetation                 eucalypt vegetation to remain undisturbed except for
                            boundary fire management as specified in Pine Rivers Shire
                            Planning Scheme
                     •      Where appropriate new developments to be landscaped
                            with locally sourced eucalypt species consistent with
                            revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers Shire Council
                            (see section 3.4.2)
                     •      Enhance remnant eucalypt patches and current green
                            spaces to accommodate koala movement as part of a
                            revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers Shire Council
                            (see section 3.4.2)
                     •      Where appropriate minimise impacts on creek systems and
                            increase eucalypt vegetation associated with creek systems
                            as part of a revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers
                            Shire Council (see section 3.4.2)
                     •      As part of a public education campaign increase public
                            awareness of value of eucalypt trees (as individuals in urban
                            blocks or remnant patches) for koalas in urban areas (see
                            section 3.4.3)


 Minimise            •      Provide koala conservation education kits to inform home
 impacts                    owners of koala conservation issues (i.e. cars, dogs, habitat
 associated with            loss etc.) as part of a “living with koalas in urban areas of
 humans                     Pine Rivers” education campaign (see section 3.4.3)
                     •      Restrain dogs at night and promote smaller less aggressive
                            breeds – rate discounts for dog owners who can
                            demonstrate dog restraint at night and registration of
                            larger dogs (greater than 15kg) significantly more expensive
                            than for smaller dogs
                     •      New and upgraded roads should include innovative design
                            elements associated with lighting, signage and koala
                            movement (see section 3.4.4)
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                   30


   Management                       Recommended planning guidelines
    objectives
 Koala conservation zone 2C
 Outcome: Enhance eucalypt vegetation linkages and increase public awareness of
 koala conservation issues.

 Protect and           •    Where appropriate new developments to be landscaped
 enhance                    with locally sourced eucalypt species consistent with
 remnant                    revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers Shire Council
 vegetation                 (see section 3.4.2)
                       •    As part of a revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers
                            Shire Council enhance remnant eucalypt patches and
                            current green spaces to accommodate koala movement (see
                            section 3.4.2)
                       •    Where appropriate minimise impacts on creek systems and
                            increase eucalypt vegetation associated with creek systems
                            as part of a revegetation plan developed by Pine Rivers
                            Shire Council (see section 3.4.2)
 Minimise              •    Provide koala conservation education kits to inform home
 impacts                    owners of koala conservation issues (i.e. cars, dogs, habitat
 associated with            loss etc.) as part of a “living with koalas in urban areas of
 humans                     Pine Rivers” education campaign (see section 3.4.3)
                       •    Promote smaller less aggressive breeds of dogs by
                            increasing large dog (greater than15kg) registration costs
                       •    New and upgraded roads should include innovative design
                            elements associated with lighting, signage and koala
                            movement (see section 3.4.4)




3.4.2   Revegetation plan for public lands

               The conservation of koalas in Pine Rivers Shire is very much reliant on the
               protection and enhancement of remnant eucalypt vegetation. It has been
               suggested by Patterson (1992) that a strategic and regional approach to
               koala habitat conservation is required. This includes programs that identify
               important habitat and koala movement areas and plans for habitat
               restoration and revegetation (Patterson (1992) also suggested that the
               development of programs for the management of fire and weeds, although
               not covered in this report, are an important facet of long-term koala
               habitat conservation and should be considered by Pine Rivers Shire Council
               in due course). As the distribution of koalas in Pine Rivers Shire has been
               identified (see section 3.2), koala movement areas can be inferred and their
               value increased by way of a strategic revegetation plan to ensure the value
               of current koala conservation zones is not compromised.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                               31

            Conservation zones 1A and 1B contain eucalypt vegetation that is of most
            significance to koalas in Pine Rivers Shire. However, the movement of
            koalas between these zones and zones 2A and 2B is impeded by Lake
            Kurwongbah and Lake Samsonvale. To ensure koalas are maintained in
            Conservation zones 2A and 2B, where mortality associated with cars and
            domestic dogs is significant, movement between conservation zones 1A and
            1B and 2A and 2B is essential. To ensure that koala movement between
            conservation zones is facilitated, a revegetation plan should be developed
            to enhance existing important koala movement areas (Fig. 3.3).

            A revegetation plan for public lands within Pine Rivers Shire needs to be
            strategic in its approach and efficient in its implementation. As habitat is
            the key to maintaining koala populations in urban parts of Pine Rivers, a
            revegetation plan should be developed as a matter of urgency. As a guide
            to developing a revegetation plan, it is recommended that Pine Rivers Shire
            Council consider the following key areas:

                •   The distribution of existing remnant vegetation areas (as identified
                    by the conservation zones in Fig. 3.1) and the location of existing
                    and potential vegetation linkage areas. To ensure the maintenance
                    of koala populations in conservations zones 2A and 2B, vegetation
                    linkages to conservation zones 1A and 1B should be enhanced. As
                    a priority, parks and reserves in the vicinity of important koala
                    movement areas, identified by Fig. 3.3, should be the focus of
                    initial revegetation activities.

                •   Consider small infrastructure charges or environmental levies
                    (suggested $20 annually – included in rates) to assist with funding
                    a revegetation plan. Environmental levies have been adopted by a
                    number of local government authorities in south-east Queensland.

                •   Public lands that should be targeted for revegetation include
                    sporting fields, school grounds, road reserves, rail reserves, hospital
                    grounds, water catchment reserves and conservation reserves.

                •   Areas should be revegetated with species consistent with the
                    appropriate regional ecosystem with eucalypt density similar to
                    surrounding areas and in the order of 200-300 stems surviving/ha
                    (tree density based on koala habitat assessment conducted by the
                    Koala Research Unit in the Koala Coast).

                •   Where possible, eucalypts should be propagated from seed from
                    the local area.

                •   Allow for adequate maintenance of planting sites including
                    watering, mulching and weeding for first 12 months after
                    plantings.

                •   Encourage community support and involvement (e.g. wildlife
                    groups, environmental groups, schools) to ensure a network of
                    assistance for plantings.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                              32

            The benefit of a revegetation plan is multifaceted. It is expected that not
            only will revegetated areas provide habitat for koalas and allow for
            movement between large remnant patches but also provide habitat for a
            suite of other fauna species within the Shire. A strategic revegetation plan
            will also increase the liveability of the Shire as green space within urban
            areas is becoming increasingly important for many local communities.
          Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                          33




                            491000           496000                            501000               506000




                      1B
6989000




                                                                                                                  6989000
                                                               1B


           1B
                                     1A                                                 2C




                      Lak                                                                             Mgv
6984000




                                                                                                                  6984000
                                                     2A




                                                               2B
6979000




                                                                                                                  6979000
                                     1B
6974000




                                                                                                                  6974000
                       1C




                                            2C
6969000




                                                                                                                  6969000




                            491000           496000                            501000               506000

                                                 0 0.5 1   2        3   4 km




                                                                                        Pine Rivers Shire




                      Fig. 3.3 Map of Pine Rivers Shire and important koala movement areas
                      (identified by arrows) between conservation zones identified by Fig. 3.1
                      where vegetation linkages need to be enhanced by a strategic revegetation
                      plan
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                             34




3.4.3   Public education campaigns

            The aim of public education campaigns in Pine Rivers Shire should be to
            increase the awareness of the general community of the conservation
            requirements of koalas in Pine Rivers Shire by providing information
            regarding koala distribution and the current threats to local koala
            populations. Campaigns must be well planned and strategic in approach to
            achieve a suitable outcome. They need to include two components –
            education and evaluation. It is recommended that planning for education
            campaigns start in July 2003. Continued liaison with QPWS is encouraged
            throughout the public education campaign planning and implementation
            process to ensure up-to-date information is provided to the Pine Rivers
            Shire community.



            Evaluation

            Prior to an education campaign, it is recommended that the level of
            community awareness of koala conservation issues be assessed by a non-
            biased, adequately designed community survey. The base line data obtained
            by this survey would enable the success of an education campaign to be
            assessed by conducting a community survey during, or at the completion of
            education campaigns. Education campaigns should continue until the
            community surveys reveal a level of public awareness of the conservation
            requirements of koalas that is deemed adequate by Council officers. Social
            scientists and urban wildlife experts provide the level of expertise required
            to successfully design and assess the results of a community survey
            program. The involvement of wildlife groups, community groups and
            schools should be encouraged as groups such as these potentially provide
            reasonably cost-efficient avenues for distributing survey forms. Evaluation
            of public perception is an important component of public education
            campaigns.



            Education

            Public education campaigns should not be a one-off event. Education
            should be an iterative process and continued information needs to be
            disseminated to the public to increase their level of awareness of koala
            conservation issues. A well-designed public education campaign may take
            some years to fully implement by providing adequate levels of repetition of
            the issues in combination with adequate evaluation of public perception.
            Public education campaigns must focus on habitat conservation as well as
            welfare issues and mortality. Below are a number of factors that are
            recommended for consideration in a public education campaign.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                  35

             •    Conservation and enhancement of existing habitat – identify areas
                  where the Pine Rivers community are most likely to see koalas in the
                  wild to understand the importance of maintaining habitat. Also
                  identify key species that are important to koalas e.g. Eucalyptus
                  tereticornis, E. moluccana, E. microcorys, Corymbia citriodora,
                  Eucalyptus fibrosa subsp. fibrosa, E. siderophloia, E. racemosa E.
                  tindaliae and E. propinqua to assist with backyard and school
                  plantings.

             •    Dogs – provide information about the risks domestic dogs pose to
                  koalas, identify high mortality areas and highlight the importance of
                  restraining dogs at night (when koalas are most active).

             •    Cars - provide information about the risks cars pose to koalas, identify
                  high mortality areas and highlight the importance of driving
                  responsibly.

             •    Koala biology and ecology – general information about koala life
                  cycles, breeding strategies, distribution in the local area, the
                  importance of koalas in the local area so that the Pine Rivers
                  community gain a sense of ownership of the regional koala
                  population – one of the most significant in south-east Queensland.




3.4.4   Existing and future road development

            In Pine Rivers Shire, the issue of road-associated koala mortality can be
            considered as having two aspects: existing roads and future road
            development. Existing roads that require urgent attention to reduce road-
            associated koala mortality include arterial and sub-arterial roads in Petrie,
            Kurwongbah, Kallangur, Bray Park, Joyner, Lawnton, Strathpine and
            Whiteside. To effectively reduce road-associated koala mortality a number
            of factors need to be considered for existing roads and the construction of
            road upgrades and new roads and are detailed below.

            •    Erection of signs on roads – identify high koala mortality zones and
                 erect signs that aim to notify motorists they are driving in a high koala
                 mortality area.

            •    Investigate issues related to visibility on roads – increased visibility on
                 roads may reduce the likelihood of koalas being hit on some roads. To
                 increase visibility, extra street lighting and the removal of understorey
                 vegetation in the centre and on road verges could be incorporated into
                 the design of existing roads as well as new and upgraded roads.

            •    Investigate the effects of exclusion fencing, underpasses and overpasses
                 – recent results from research conducted in northern NSW suggest that
                 underpasses may provide passages for safe movement by koalas under
                 roads. Similar trials could be conducted in Pine Rivers Shire. Exclusion
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                               36

                fencing could be used to encourage animals to cross roads at locations
                that increase the likelihood of a successful crossing e.g. bridges.

            •   Consider methods for reducing speed and traffic volume – reductions
                in speed and traffic volume could be achieved during the planning
                stage for new and upgraded roads.

            •   Design of new and upgraded roads should consider the location of
                healthy koala populations – the location of new and upgraded roads
                must determine the status of nearby koala populations in areas of
                significance for koalas. Different criteria can be used to assess
                significant koala populations including koala density, population
                health, area of habitat affected and should be assessed as part of an
                impact assessment for the road development.

            •   Liaise with relevant government agencies as to the appropriateness of
                future road location – information must be obtained from relevant
                government agencies during the construction of new or upgrading
                existing roads to assess likely impacts on nearby koala populations.
                Communication is an essential component of obtaining quality
                information to assist with conserving wildlife populations.




3.5   Koala population monitoring and research

            Population monitoring is an aspect of wildlife management programs that
            is sometimes overlooked. Continued monitoring of the Pine Rivers Shire
            koala population is recommended during the implementation of planning
            guidelines and other koala management programs in the Shire.

            A number of management programs currently exist in Pine Rivers Shire that
            provide an opportunity to monitor the regional koala population. The
            annual community-based koala survey managed by Pine Rivers Shire
            Council should continue as the distribution of reports can be monitored
            over time and it provides an avenue of effective community participation in
            koala conservation issues. Similarly, it is recommended that the koala rescue
            and rehabilitation program currently operating in the Shire (jointly operated
            by the Pine Rivers Koala Care Association and QPWS) continues to store
            koala sighting data in the koala database at the Moggill Koala Hospital.
            These data provide an opportunity to monitor the distribution and health
            status of the koala population in the Shire and to assess on an annual (or
            more frequent) basis, the distribution of road and domestic dog-related
            koala mortality. Continued liaison with QPWS is encouraged to ensure that
            adequate monitoring of the Pine Rivers koala population occurs.

            In the medium to long-term, it is recommended that koala surveys be
            repeated every five years at a number of survey sites (section 5.3) to
            monitor any upward or downward trends in koala abundance. The urban
            sites and some bushland sites should be the focus of repeated surveys. Any
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                           37

            significant changes in koala abundance in areas of high conservation value
            to koalas may need to be reflected by changes in koala management.

            It is also recommended that more detailed information be acquired via a
            detailed radio-tracking study of urban koalas. Currently little is known
            about the ecology of koalas in urban areas and future management of
            urban koalas would benefit from the detailed information that radio-
            tracking studies provide. This was also a key recommendation of the Pine
            Rivers Shire Koala Management Strategy (Carrick 1994). Continued liaison
            with QPWS may provide opportunities to conduct detailed research
            collaboratively (involvement from other research institutions e.g.
            universities) on koalas in urban areas within the Shire.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                38




4. References
            Australia and New Zealand Environment and Conservation Council (1998).
                     ‘National Koala Conservation Strategy’. (Environment Australia:
                     Canberra.)

            Buckland, S. T., Anderson, D. R., Burnham, K. P., and Laake, J. L. (1993).
                    ‘Distance sampling: estimating abundance of biological
                    populations’. (Chapman and Hall: London.)

            Carrick, F. N. (1994). Koala management strategy for Pine Rivers Shire.
                      Unpublished report, Koala Study Program, University of
                      Queensland.

            Caughley, G., and Sinclair, A. R. E. (1994). ‘Wildlife Ecology and
                    Management’. (Blackwell Science: Cambridge.)

            Clancy, T. F., Pople, A. R., and Gibson, L. A. (1997). Comparison of
                     helicopter line transects for estimating densities of kangaroos.
                     Wildlife Research 24, 397-409.

            Curtin, A., Lunney, D., and Matthews, A. (2002). A survey of a low-density
                     koala population in a major reserve system, near Sydney, New
                     South Wales. Australian Mammalogy 23, 135-134.

            Dique, D. S., Penfold, G., Thompson, J., Leslie, R., and Preece, H., (2001).
                    Koala distribution and density in southeast Queensland: the
                    accuracy and precision of koala surveys. In ‘The Research and
                    Management of Non-urban Koala Populations’. (Eds. K. Lyons, A.
                    Melzer, F. Carrick and D. Lamb.) pp. 105-121. (Koala Research
                    Centre of Queensland: Rockhampton.)

            Environmental Systems Research Institute (1999). ‘ArcView GIS’.
                    (Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc.: Redlands,
                    California.) Conroy, M. J., and Smith, D. R. (1994). Designing
                    large-scale surveys of wildlife abundance and diversity using
                    statistical sampling principles. Transactions of the North American
                    Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference 59, 159-169.

            Gordon, G., and McGreevy, D. G. (1978). The status of the koala in
                    Queensland. In ‘The Koala, Proceedings of the Taronga
                    Symposium’. (Ed. T. J. Bergin.) pp.125-131. (Zoological Parks
                    Board of NSW: Sydney.)

            Gordon, G., McGreevy, D. G., and Lawrie B. C. (1990). Koala populations in
                    Queensland: major limiting factors. In ‘Biology of the Koala’. (Eds.
                    A. K. Lee, K. A. Handasyde and G. D. Sanson.) pp. 85-95. (Surrey
                    Beatty and Sons: Sydney.)
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                39

            Hasegawa, M. (1995). Habitat utilisation by koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus)
                   at Point Halloran, Queensland. MSc Thesis, University of
                   Queensland, Brisbane.

            Jones, R., and Carter, J. (2000). Summary of Queensland Parks and Wildlife
                     Service Koala Reports for Redland Shire, 1999. Unpublished Report,
                     Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service, Brisbane.

            Kikkawa, J., and Walter, M. (1968). Report on the koala survey, 1967.
                    Wildlife in Australia 5, 100-03.

            Laake, J. L., Buckland, S. T., Anderson, D. R., and Burnham, K. P. (1993).
                     ‘Distance users guide version 2.0’. Colorado Cooperative Fisheries
                     and Wildlife Research Unit, Colorado State University, Colorado.

            le Mar, K., Southwell, C., and McArthur, C. (2001). Evaluation of line-
                     transect sampling to estimate nocturnal densities of macropods in
                     open and closed habitats. Wildlife Research 28, 9-16.

            Lunney, D., Coburn, D., Matthews, A., and Moon, C. (2001). Community
                    perceptions of koala populations and their management in Port
                    Stephens and Coffs Harbour local government areas, New South
                    Wales. In ‘The Research and Management of Non-urban Koala
                    Populations’. (Eds. K. Lyons, A. Melzer, F. Carrick, D. Lamb.) pp.
                    71-88. (Koala Research Centre of Queensland: Rockhampton.)

            Lunney, D., Moon, C., and Matthews, A. (1996). A 1990 community-based
                    survey of the koala Phascolarctos cinereus population at Iluka in
                    northern New South Wales. In ‘Koalas - Research for Management
                    - Proceedings of the Brisbane Koala Symposium’. (Ed. G. Gordon.)
                    pp. 102-122. (World Koala Research Incorporated: Brisbane.)

            Lunney, D., Moon, C., Matthews, A., and Turbill, J. (1998). Coffs Harbour
                    koala plan of management. A comprehensive koala plan of
                    management for the City of Coffs Harbour prepared under State
                    Environmentally Planning Policy No. 44 – Koala Habitat
                    Protection. (NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service: Hurstville.)

            McCallum, H. (2000). ‘Population Parameters: Estimation for Ecological
                   Models’. (Blackwell Science: Oxford.)

            Martin, R. W. (1985). Overbrowsing and decline of a population of the
                     koala, Phascolarctos cinereus, in Victoria. III. Population dynamics.
                     Australian Wildlife Research 12, 377-86.

            Melzer, A. (1995). Aspects of the ecology of the koala, Phascolarctos
                     cinereus (Goldfuss, 1817), in the sub-humid woodlands of central
                     Queensland. PhD Thesis, University of Queensland, Brisbane.

            Melzer, A., and Lamb. D. (1994). Low density populations of the koala
                     (Phascolarctos cinereus) in central Queensland. Proceedings of the
                     Royal Society of Queensland 104, 89-93.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                   40

            Mitchell, P. J., Bilney, R., and Martin, R. W. (1988). Population structure
                     and reproductive status of koalas on Raymond Island, Victoria.
                     Australian Wildlife Research 15, 511-14.

            Mitchell, P., and Martin, R. (1990). The structure and dynamics of koala
                     populations - French Island in perspective. In ‘Biology of the
                     Koala’. (Eds. A. K. Lee, K. A. Handasyde and G. D. Sanson.) pp. 97-
                     108. (Surrey Beatty and Sons: Sydney.)

            Munks, S. A., Cockrey, R., and Foley, W. J. (1996). Characteristics of
                    arboreal marsupial habitat in the semi-arid woodlands of northern
                    Queensland. Wildlife Research 23, 185-95.

            Nattrass, A. E. O., and Fiedler, K. B., (1996). Koala Rescue - the perception
                     and the reality. In ‘Koalas - Research for Management -
                     Proceedings of the Brisbane Koala Symposium’. (Ed. G. Gordon.)
                     pp. 129-136. (World Koala Research Incorporated: Brisbane.)

            Patterson, R. (1992). Draft management plan for the conservation of koalas
                     in Queensland. Unpublished report, Queensland Parks and Wildlife
                     Service.

            Patterson, R. (1996). The distribution of koalas in Queensland. In ‘Koalas:
                     Research for Management - Proceedings of the Brisbane Koala
                     Symposium’. (Ed. G. Gordon.) pp. 75-81. (World Koala Research
                     Incorporated: Brisbane.)

            Phillips, B. (1990). ‘Koalas - The Little Australians We’d All Hate to Lose’.
                      (Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service: Canberra.)

            Phillips, S., Callaghan, J., and Thompson, V. (2000). The tree species
                      preferences of koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) inhabiting forest and
                      woodland communities on Quaternary deposits in the Port
                      Stephens area, New South Wales. Wildlife Research 27, 1-10.

            Rowland, D. T. (2002) Urban design guidelines for koala habitat. Masters
                   Thesis, Queensland University of Technology: Brisbane.

            Sattler, P. S., and Williams, R. D. (1999). ‘The Conservation Status of
                      Queensland’s Bioregional Ecosystems’. (Environmental Protection
                      Agency: Brisbane.)

            Smith, A. P., and Andrews, S. (1997). Koala habitat, abundance and
                     distribution in the Pine Creek study area: A report to State Forests
                     of NSW.

            Southwell, C. (1994). Evaluation of walked line transect counts for
                   estimating macropod density. Journal of Wildlife Management 58,
                   348-56.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                             41

            Sullivan, B. J. (2000). Estimating the abundance of broadscale, low density
                      populations: koalas in the mulgalands of south-west Queensland.
                      PhD Thesis, University of Queensland, Gatton.

            Thompson, J. (2001). The role of research in koala management: case
                   studies from south-east Queensland. In: ‘The research and
                   management of non-urban koala populations’, (eds.) K. Lyons, A.
                   Melzer, F. Carrick, D. Lamb. Koala Research Centre of Queensland,
                   Rockhampton, pp 89-104.

            White, N. A., and Kunst, N. D. (1990). Aspects of the ecology of the koala in
                    southeastern Queensland. In ‘Biology of the Koala’. (Eds. A. K. Lee,
                    K. A. Handasyde and G. D. Sanson.) pp. 109-116. (Surrey Beatty
                    and Sons: Sydney
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                           42




5. Appendices


5.1   Koala abundance in Pine Rivers Shire

            This appendix provides the estimates of koala abundance for each suburb
            within Pine Rivers Shire. Koala density, and hence koala abundance, was
            calculated for each suburb or abundance polygon according to the
            procedure outlined in section 2.2. The estimated numbers of koalas in each
            suburb are detailed in Table 5.1. The total number of koalas estimated in
            Pine Rivers Shire is approximately 4600.
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                   43



            Table 5.1 Estimates of koala abundance for each suburb/polygon in the Pine Rivers
            Shire based on densities obtained from bushland and urban surveys (note: (i) density
            estimate applied to urban habitat in urban polygons and bushland habitat in
            bushland polygons and (ii) abundance estimates of zero may be an underestimate as
            signs of koalas were noted at some survey sites where koala density was estimated
            to be zero - refer to section 2.2.3 for more detail)


                                    Area suburb        Area habitat       Estimated
             Suburb/polygon
                                        (ha)               (ha)           abundance
                Albany Creek              968                210                 6
                 Arana Hills              357                 39                 0
                  Bray Park              447                447                 36
                  Brendale               1068               151                 21
                    Bunya               1432                964                 0
              Camp Mountain              1642               919                 0
                  Cashmere               2921               2382              241
                Cedar Creek              2316               1070                90
              Clear Mountain             1239                681                31
                 Closeburn               957                523                 44
                   Dakabin                572                163                74
                  Dayboro               1281                408                 26
                    Draper               940                341                 0
                 Eatons Hill              924                360                36
                Everton Hills             334                 91                0
                 Ferny Hills             1021                679                 0
                    Griffin              1789               768                 85
                  Highvale               2325               1415                59
               Jollys Lookout            305                245                 0
                    Joyner               566                566                 79
                  Kallangur             1117               1117               179
                Kings Scrub              1582               440                 26
                Kurwongbah               4117              2178               986
                Laceys Creek             8105               4666               275
             Lake Kurwongbah             328                  0                 0
             Lake Samsonvale             1980                  0                 0
                  Lawnton                 928                928               121
                 Mango Hill              2435               2435               243
              Mount Glorious             1051               2972              125
                Mount Nebo               1425               1732                73
              Mount Pleasant             3810               2011               121
              Mount Samson               1944                645                63
             Murrumba Downs               606               606                 18
                Ocean View               3923               1893               114
                    Petrie                685               685               178
                 Rush Creek              1317                768               104
              Samford Valley            2047                645                 27
              Samford Village            140                 27                 1
                Samsonvale              11765               7919               507
                 Strathpine              724                724                 72
                   Warner                1060               368                 51
                  Whiteside              1069               1069               449
             Wights Mountain            1042                216                 0
                    Yugar                503                269                 23
                   TOTALS               77105              46736              4584
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                  44




5.2   Evaluation of line transect sampling

            Information obtained from the evaluation of line transect sampling is
            contained in paper published in Wildlife Research. The reference for this
            paper is:

            Dique, D.S., de Villiers, D.L., and Preece, H.J. (2003). Evaluation of line-
            transect sampling for estimating koala abundance in Pine Rivers Shire,
            south-east Queensland. Wildlife Research 30, 127-133.

            This paper can be accessed by visiting www.publish.csiro.au/journals/wr
            (subscription to CSIRO is required).
Pine Rivers Koala Project                                                                      45




5.3    Koala survey site locations

             This appendix contains information regarding the location of sites where
             koala surveys were conducted. It is recommended that koala surveys be
             repeated every five years at a number of key sites (Table 5.2) to monitor any
             upward or downward trend in koala abundance. Liaison with QPWS is
             essential to maintain a standardised survey method for repeated surveys.


             Table 5.2 Location of survey sites used in determining koala density in Pine Rivers
             Shire

Site No.                             Site location                                  2002 UBD
   1       Joyner (41ha) – S of McIllwraith Rd, W of Youngs Crossing Rd,              Map 97
           N of One Mile Creek Reserve, E of Forgan Rd
   2       Lawnton (53ha) – S of Akers Rd and Bray Rd, W of Spencer St,               Map 98
           N of Todds Rd and creek, E of Bray Rd
   3       Strathpine (51ha) – S of Samsonvale Rd, W of Windrest St, N                Map 98
           of Acland Dve, E of Lavrack Rd Old North Rd (BP High exc.)
   4       Mango Hill (44ha) – S of Anzac Ave, W of Halpine Dve, N of                 Map 89
           Fresh Water Creek Rd, E of Bruce Highway
   5       Kallangur (35ha) – S of and including Penson and Jim Akers                 Map 88
           Parks, W of Old Gympie Rd Anzac Ave, E of Marsden Rd
   6       Petrie (44ha) – S of PRSC Reserve, W of Beeville Rd, N of                  Map 88
           Daybora Rd plus S of Frenchs Rd, W of Forestville Rd, N of
           Chamberry Rd, E of Beeville Rd
   7       Bray Park (49ha) – S of Panorama St, W of Kensington Wy, S                 Map 98
           of Hopetoun, E of Majestic, N of Gloucester Cr Dover St, E of
           Arthur St Casuarina Dve (HS Prim. Inc.)
   8       Whiteside (23ha) – S of Daybora Rd, W of Vores Rd, N of                    Map 87
           creek, E of Whiteside Rd
  9        PRSC (Scout Hut), Lot 41 Beeville Rd, Kurwongbah                        Map 88 D17
  10       Mt Mee State Forest, Mt Brisbane Rd, Mt Pleasant                            -
  11       SEQ Water, east of Postmans track, Samsonvale                           Map 86 H8
  12       Rosalie Waters, 2703 Mt Mee Rd, Oceanview                               Map 45 N20
  13       Alison Booker Crt Res. (PRSC), Alison Booker Crt, Samsonvale            Map 85 K5
  14       Qld Rural Holdings, Lot 89 Daybora Rd, Kurwongbah                        Map 66
  15       Clear Mountain SF, Winn Rd, Cashmere                                    Map 86 Q19
  16       SEQ Water, west of Forgan Rd, Joyner                                    Map 97 H6
  17       Monier PGH Holdings, 90-110 Kremzow Rd, Brendale                        Map 108 J1
  18       Brisbane FP, Samford Rd, Ferny Hills                                     Map 117
  19       Amcor Cartonboard Petrie Mill, Lot 14 Anzac Ave, Petrie                 Map 98 Q2
  20       McDowells Rd Res. (PRSC), McDowells Rd, Yugar                           Map 106 H8
  21       Bunyaville SF, Jinker Track, Bunya                                      Map 118 F8
  22       Murrenbong (Scout Campsite), 135 Scout Rd, Kurwongbah                   Map 87 P11

				
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