Meet Koala Clancy
I want to tell you about Clancy. But before I say anything else I should probably mention that I’m NOT sponsored or paid or anything to write this. I simply want to tell you about a really good initiative. Well, perhaps I also have another point – but we’ll get to that….
First; Clancy. Clancy is a koala.
Clancy lives in the You Yangs Regional Park close to Melbourne in Australia. Koalas are threatened for several reasons but more and more are being done to save this cute little furry animal. One of the wonderful initiatives are taking place in the You Yangs. Here koala researcher, Janine and her team have monitored koalas for nearly 20 years. Monitoring an animal may not sound that revolutionary – but the way it’s done here is quite extraordinary. Janine discovered that all koala noses are different! Just like our fingerprints you can distinguish koala Pat from koala Clancy from koala Mary. Meaning that without touching, chipping, tagging or anything like it the researchers can follow the animal and see where they live, how they live, what they eat, how far they move etc etc – in a total non-intrusive way. The finding of the koala-nose-pattern also means that it’s quite easy for “normal” people to identify koalas in the neighbourhood and in that way monitor the entire population (and hopefully save them from extinction).
Save a koala
So who is Clancy? As I said – he’s a koala. He lives in the You Yangs – where you can meet him and help save his home.
As we all know research costs money. To raise money Janine and her team has – for years now – also worked as tourist guides. Part of what you pay goes back into the research. On a day tour from Melbourne you get to see how the researchers work, how they identify koalas, how the work hard to remove bone seed to improve the habitat and you get a much better understanding of the animals – and nature in general.
And why am I telling you this? Even though koalas may be threatened there’s still loads of places you can see them in the wild. (I’ll even tell you where; if you drive on the Great Ocean Road there’s a koloni right off Kennett River. And you should be pretty unlucky not to see one or two driving down to the lighthouse at Cape Otway,). So why pay to go on a tour?
Because if you don’t there might not be any koalas in the wild left to look at in the end.
Free stuff – or?
And that’s my second point. Sure. Free stuff sounds great. There just is no such thing as free stuff. Everything comes with a price. But at least by helping out these koala enthusiasts the price you pay might actually make a difference.
If you’re curious you’ll find more about Clancy here: http://www.echidnawalkabout.com.au/foundation
If you want to go on the tour you can find it here: http://www.echidnawalkabout.com.au/koalaskangaroosinthewild