20 students from three primary schools within the Logan region were invited to represent their class and attend the inaugural Camp Koala. The camp was hosted on the grounds of the beautiful Aroona homestead in partnership with the Queensland Trust For Nature, thanks to a community grant awarded by the CommBank Foundation. The film crew from Totally Wild were there to capture all the excitement as students learned about the balance required in using land for both production of agricultural crops and conservation of threatened native species.
After a bush walk to collect camera trap data and a brief sighting of the elusive brush-tailed rock wallaby, we were treated to a demonstration of koala detection dogs working with their handlers. They demonstrated for the students how koalas can be tracked using their scats, which is a non-invasive way of collecting DNA to identify family groups, movements, habitat usage, infections, and so much more!
Early the next morning, before it got too hot and sunny, we planted 200 trees before our friends would have even walked through the school gates! The trees were a mix of species to match the biodiversity of the natural forest and will help provide more of the right environment for the threatened species that live in the area. The area for planting was chosen based on information gathered by the koala detection dogs that showed the koala needed more shelter and food sources in this area.
The whole episode is wonderful (click the image below to watch!) and you can see our Camp Koala segment from 4:22 to 8:02.