It’s been such a heavy, eventful year, and with everything going on in the world, particularly the coronavirus pandemic, it’s easy to forget everything else that has happened lately.
But just a few months ago the eyes of the world were on Australia, which battled massive bushfires that devastated the wildlife.
The native koala population, already in danger of extinction, was hit particularly hard, and there were many stories of locals stepping up to rescue and care for the surviving animals, in the hopes that they could recover and return to the wild.
Now we’re pleased to report that those koalas are beginning to return to their native habitats.
Port Macquarie Koala Hospital in New South Wales, Australia, has been busy over the past few months caring for displaced koalas, but their hard work has paid off as they recently began to return them to the wild.
“To be able to release so many of our koalas back to their original habitats, even to their original tree in some cases – makes us very happy,” hospital president Sue Ashton told Port News.
On April 2, they bid farewell to one of their most famous residents: Anwen, the first female koala rescued from the bushfires.
With both the koala and her native land recovered, it was time for her to return home.
“After five months of recovery from burns and Chlamydia infection, Anwen has been released back to her home range,” the hospital wrote on Facebook.
“The habitat is looking extremely healthy after much rain, and we’re sure Anwen will thrive now.”
Port Macquarie cared for 53 injured koalas from NSW, and plan to release 26 over the next few days. They are being released earlier than expected after heavy rainfall restored their habitats.
To see these koalas returning to the wild is an inspiring sight, to see things begin to recover after seemingly endless devastation.
It’s also a bit fitting that it’s happening at the height of the coronavirus pandemic: a reminder that there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel.
“It marks a proud moment for Australia; to see our Koala population rebuild, starting to recover from what was such a devastating time,” group manager economic and cultural development Liesa Davies told Port News.
“Occasions like this gives us all reason to hope and look to the future.”
What incredible news! We’re so glad these koalas are beginning to return home, and that Australia is beginning to recover after everything they’ve been through.
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