All this heat as a result of the global warming that Tony Abbott still denies is affecting the koalas in more ways than increased threat of bush fires sweeping through habitat vital for the survival of koala populations. The heat is bring on stress, (possibly due to dehydration) which increases the impact on the health of koalas carrying Chlamydia.
The current spell of hot dry weather is having a big impact on the health of mid north coast koalas.
The Port Macquarie Koala Hospital is reporting unusually high numbers of admissions with many koalas with Chlamydia.
Hospital supervisor Cheyne Flanagan said the disease is worsened by stress which many koalas might be experiencing due to dehydration.
She said Chlamydia is a common koala disease.
“It’s contagious, it’s caused by a bacteria, it’s sexually transmitted but once they’ve got it in their system they never get rid of it.
“It can come from stressful situations like dehydration.
“They are suffering from this heat just as much as us humans and other animals as well.”
Ms Flanagan said low leaf moisture is driving the koalas to ground where dogs and cars are also a threat.
“The spike is in October normally that’s our peak month, normally this time of year is quite quiet,” she said.
“It’s definitely we’d say the dry conditions that are just causing them grief.
“They’re probably also coming to ground looking for a bit of water too.
“The holiday traffic’s certainly not helping matters.
“I mean especially people from out of town or city people that are not aware of wildlife on roads.
“They need to be much more aware and scan the side of the road as they’re driving along.”
Posted Tue Jan 8, 2013 9:48am AEDT