New evidence has revealed that koalas may be extinct on the New South Wales far south coast.
The first stage of a study looking at the animals in the Eurobodalla has recorded only one koala being spotted since the research began at the start of 2012.
The project’s co-ordinator, Keith Joliffe, said habitats have been identified in the region.
But he said there are no koalas living in those spots.
“There’s no persistent evidence of resident koalas in the Eurobodalla,” Mr Joliffe said.
“We’d probably refer to that as a dispersing animal because they’ve come from another area and at this stage, we have to contemplate the possibility that our generation has witnessed function extinction within the Eurobodalla borders.”
Mr Joliffe said more research is needed to confirm the initial findings.
“What we need to do is to recheck some of the findings on eucalyptus types,” he said.
“We need to apply a much more controlled statistical device and include all sorts of other habitats in that area.”
Mr Joliffe said it would need to be a specific study.
“We’d need to concentrate on the potential of the landscape to support low density in the sense that it will revive koalas that are adapting to less than optimum habitats,” he said.
“When we look at that we find like it may still be some viable habitats in the area.”
He said another survey will soon be done in the region.
“In terms of whether there are any resident groups of koalas in the shire, we can’t know that without a comprehensive survey,” he said.
“We’re going to try some sample work ourselves and we’ll have a little expedition.”