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Saving a species | Koala donates $1.5 million to WWF-Australia

Unified in a common goal to protect threatened and endangered wildlife, Koala and WWF-Australia have been protecting biodiversity together since 2017. To date, Koala has donated over $1.5 million to WWF-Australia for the conservation and preservation of wildlife. 

What’s in a name? For Koala, it started off with a mission to help support the most iconic but threatened Aussie icon, the koala, and a partnership with WWF-Australia to make this possible. We pledged that with every sold mattress, a portion would go to our favourite sleepy mates and sustaining their habitats, which includes planting trees and helping sick and injured koalas.

The koala adoption program quickly turned into working on nest cooling solutions for green sea turtles as their future survival is severely impacted  by climate change. Last year, during the devastating bushfires of 2019-20, Koala and WWF-Australia were able to provide emergency funding to help the recovery of another animal in need – the glossy black-cockatoo.

The Glossy Black-Cockatoo 

Kangaroo Island glossy black-cockatoos are a subspecies to those found in eastern Australia and are found exclusively on Kangaroo Island. These gorgeous glossies are classified as an endangered species and have had it tough since before the 2019-20 fires -but together we’ve been helping them bounce back.

The fires of 2019-20 ravaged over 60% of the habitat and food for the 450 or so glossies left.

In May 2021, Koala and WWF-Australia visited the on-the-ground Glossy Black-Cockatoo Recovery team, part of the Kangaroo Island Landscape Board, who work tirelessly to ensure the survival of the glossies for generations to come.

Meet Dream! A recently hatched glossy black-cockatoo

The Project 

To help the glossies in their recovery, our project has focused on protecting and restoring feed and shelter trees as well as nesting sites.

It was an especially exciting time to visit as the glossy chicks were beginning to hatch! Each new hatchling is a huge step forward in the conservation of the species and flock counts were already higher than expected.

To date, the program has resulted in:

  • 38 new hatchlings born in 2020, 60% of those having hatched within the half of the island most affected by the fires. A further 33 nestlings have hatched so far in 2021, many in nest boxes installed through the project in 2020.
  • The team has installed more than 19 ‘cockatubes’, along with other nest boxes (28 in total), which are artificial hollows, and possum-proofed 18 surviving nests to help the glossies out.
  • The team has planted over 7,100 drooping sheoak trees, giving the glossies back their exclusive food source.
  •  454 glossy black-cockatoos recorded at minimum.
The Glossy Black-Cockatoo, WWF-Australia and Koala team possum-proofing the new ‘cockatube’

Securing a future

The Glossy Black-Cockatoo Recovery team has been operating for approximately 25 years on a shoestring budget. The groundwork laid down by the program was instrumental in securing a future for the glossies, especially after the impacts of the fires of 2019-20. The initial results have been extremely positive and show the incredible resilience of the species and demonstrate the importance of long-term conservation efforts such as this.

Ingrained as part of Kangaroo Island’s identity, these beautiful birds hold a special place in local hearts and minds and are seen as a beacon of hope in the healing of the land.

Koala is continuing its support of the glossy black-cockatoo by donating a portion of every sofa bed sale – including our new Cushy Sofa Bed – to the conservation program with WWF-Australia. What a win-win situation! The Cushy Sofa Bed is not only making friends and family happy as we are able to come together again during COVID but it is helping our customers directly contribute to the important conservation effort, ensuring Aussie wildlife thrives for years to come.

Because every home is worth protecting.

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