Brisbane’s Koala Bushlands grows by 1,000 hectares

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk has dedicated a 52 hectare property at Burbank to Brisbane’s Koala Bushlands as part of Council’s plan to support threatened flora and fauna, including significant koala populations.

Cr Quirk said Brisbane’s Koala Bushlands had grown by more than 1,000 hectares from acquisitions made as part of Council’s successful Bushland Acquisition Program which started 25 years ago.

“Brisbane is Australia’s Most Sustainable City and also the most biologically diverse capital in the nation, supporting many plant and animal species, including significant koala populations,” he said.

“Our goal is to have 40 per cent of Brisbane in green space by 2031 and we are currently around about 35 per cent. We’ve got 2092 parks covering 6,340 hectares and that continues to grow as we purchase land for parks in the suburbs as well as bushland.

“Local residents and businesses have played their role in helping our city become clean and green and one way has been through our 25 year old Bushland Acquisition Program and payment of the Bushland Preservation Levy in their rates account.

“Burbank has the largest amount of land across Brisbane that we have purchased through the program with 878 hectares and is within one of Queensland’s most significant koala habitat areas. We have purchased 148 hectares at Burbank in the past three years out of 316 hectares citywide.

“This property at Moxon Road supports a diversity of open eucalypt forest areas, including a very large number of mature scribbly gum trees that are one of the preferred food species for koalas. The age of the trees also means that a high proportion of the trees support hollows, which would provide critical habitat for a diversity of species.

“As well as koalas, wildlife who call this area home include wallabies, reptiles and a wide array of bird species. Visitors to the Bushlands can enjoy bushwalking, picnicking and horse riding.”

Cr Quirk said the Bushland Acquisition Program, had saved some of Brisbane’s most loved natural areas for future generations including Karawatha Forest, Brisbane Koala Bushlands, Tinchi Tamba Wetlands and Pooh Corner, plus parts of Mt Coot-tha, Toohey Forest, Belmont Hills and Chermside Hills.

Cr Quirk said more than $290 million had been invested in the program over 25 years acquiring more than 3,400 hectares of bushland and he promises the program will remain.

“Most of the areas protected through the program are accessible to the public, so residents and visitors have the opportunity to enjoy Brisbane’s natural environment, participate in outdoor recreation activities and see the diversity of plants and animals that call the city home.

Cr Quirk said the program helps Council to achieve a balance between providing world class outdoor recreation areas for the community to enjoy while protecting the natural value of these areas.

“Council has committed almost $14 million to the Bushland Acquisition Program in 2015-16, which will fund the purchase and protection of additional, significant bushland areas,” he said.

Suburb

Total Purchased

Purchased since 2012-13

Anstead

98.3

16.7

Bald Hills

351.5

0

Bardon

42.1

0

Bracken Ridge

8.2

1.0

Bridgeman Downs

5.7

1.5

Brighton

8.0

0

Burbank

878.0

148.3

Cannon Hill

11.5

1.3

Carina Heights

8.3

0

Carindale

47.3

0

Chandler

8.1

0

Chermside West

2.6

0

Doolandella

20.8

0

Drewvale

31.9

16.7

Eight Mile Plains

9.7

0

Heathwood

50.8

0

Karawatha

377.5

8.0

Keperra

34.5

0

Kholo

615.9

47.5

Kuraby

26.7

0

Larapinta

114.3

42.7

Mackenzie

39.7

0

Mansfield

12.2

0

McDowall

0.9

0

Moggill

27.5

17.8

Moorooka

12.8

0

Mt Coot-tha

12.2

0

Mt Gravatt East

1.3

1.3

Murarrie

46.4

0

Oxley

10.6

0

Pallara

1.7

1.7

Parkinson

114.5

0

Ransome

23.0

0

Sandgate

56.9

0

Seven Hills

0.5

0

Seventeen Mile Rocks

13.6

0

Stretton

5.8

0

Tarragindi

0.4

0.4

The Gap

8.8

4.7

Tingalpa

47.3

0

Upper Kedron

17.5

0

Wacol

178.9

0.8

Wakerley

20.7

6.1

Westlake

3.2

0

Wishart

3.9

0

TOTAL

3,412

316.5