Ecology and Management of Central Queensland's Koala Islands

Location: St Bees Island, Brampton Island, Rabbit and Newry islands. The study area is primarily focused on St Bees (20o 55' 14.12', 149o 26' 32.50') and Brampton (20o 48' 34.73', 149o 16' 27.64') Islands in the South Cumberland Islands and Brampton Islands national parks north-east of Mackay in Central Queensland. Secondary study areas have been established on the nearby Rabbit and Newry Islands (20o 51' 24.20', 148o 54' 57.80') north of Mackay and in the Newry Island National Park.

Summary: This long term study commenced in 1998. It is a multidisciplinary research program involving community, universities, state government agencies and international interests. Areas of research interest include structure and dynamics of koala habitat; koala ranging behaviour, habitat utilisation and diet; demography, population dynamics and social interaction; genetics and disease profiles.

Contacts: CQUniversity Dr Alistair Melzer (; University of Queensland Dr William Ellis (, Dr Sean Fitzgibbon (

Managing Central Queensland's Clarke Connors Range Koalas

Location: Hills and ranges associated with the Clarke-Connors Ranges from around Collinsville south to Marlborough.

Summary: This is a long-term study. The research program commenced in 2016 with funding from the Qld Department of Transport and Main Roads. This multidisciplinary program involves local landholders, CQUniversity, University of Queensland and local community groups. Areas of research include the ecology of the koala, population and habitat dynamics as well as broad-scale remote sensing of koala habitat landscapes.

Contacts: CQUniversity: Dr Rolf Schlagloth (, Dr Bret Heath (, Dr Michael Hewson ( University of Queensland: Dr William Ellis ( ), Dr Sean Fitzgibbon (

Central Queensland's Koala Re-Introduction

Location: Rockhampton and Livingstone Local Government Areas.

Summary: This project explores the potential to recover koala populations in relic koala habitat in eastern Central Queensland. Initially, the project will test the feasibility of direct reintroduction of koalas, and develop the methodology for the acclimatisation, release and monitoring of the koalas. The project will also explore the needs of rural landholders to accommodate koalas into property planning.

Contacts: CQUniversity: Dr Rolf Schlagloth (, Dr Flavia Santamaria (, Dr Bret Heath (

Central Queensland Council's Koala Recovery Planning

Location: All Local Government Areas within Central Queensland with koala habitat.

Summary: The relic koala habitat within Central Highlands, Rockhampton, Livingstone and Isaac Local Government Areas has been mapped. Also, the lands with potential for recovery as koala habitat have been mapped. This project will develop conceptual plans for the realistic conservation of koalas and koala habitat in these Central Queensland local government areas.

Contacts: CQUniversity: Dr Alistair Melzer (, Dr Rolf Schlagloth (, Dr Flavia Santamaria (, Dr Bret Heath (

Koala Habitat Health

Location: A range of koala habitats in Queensland - with an initial focus on South-East and Central Queensland habitat types in remnant and non-remnant landscapes.

Summary: On 21 July 2017, the Honourable Dr Steven Miles MP, Queensland Government Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection and Minister for National Parks and the Great Barrier Reef, announced the recipients of 2017 Community Sustainability Action grants Round 1 – Koala Research. CQUniversity was awarded $91,812.00 to study Koala habitat health in 2018. The project will identify the most applicable satellite remote sensing tools for landscape-scale assessment of koala habitat condition change and develop a low-cost koala habitat 'health check' to enable rapid assessment of habitat before any management intervention.

Contact: CQUniversity: Dr Michael Hewson (

Koala on a pole