Conserving Koala Country

Conserving Koala Country

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Choosing mates.... size, age, or persistence?

Remarkably little is known about the love life of koalas. Are they fussy about who they mate with, or is it simply a case of a male being in the right place at the right time?…. and by ‘right time’ I mean when the female is receptive. This breeding season we are hoping to find the answer. We are deploying proximity collars fitted with GPS loggers to every koala we can find in a woodland patch. These collars record the time and duration of interactions between collared koalas. So far, we have 19 koalas collared but still have another 17 collars to deploy.

The study is the basis of an honours project by Deakin student ‘Darcy’. Darcy has already done an amazing job of preparing the collars, and has proven to be a capable koala catcher and handler. He will now have the task of tracking and observing these koalas, mapping resources throughout the site, and in January retrieving the collars for data download and interpretation.

Darcy bonding with the joey of one of his study animals

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