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During the 2019-20 Australian bushfire season, fires raged through regions with the largest koala populations. One of the hardest hit regions was Kangaroo Island where researchers estimate 80% of the koalas perished. In this study, researchers will review and analyze clinical case data collected from multiple koala rescue groups and wildlife veterinarians who treated and cared for koalas from Kangaroo Island and other koala habitats hard hit by bushfires. Findings will help identify both predisposing risk factors and prognostic indicators related to immediate injuries such as smoke inhalation and burn severity, as well as longer term problems related to stress, dehydration, starvation and disease. Together, this new information will be invaluable for advising veterinary emergency response teams rescuing and caring for koalas impacted by future bushfires.

Study ID
D21ZO-506
Study Status
Active
Start Date
11/01/2020
Grant amount awarded
$57,470
Grant recipient
University of Adelaide
Study country
Australia
Investigator
Natasha Speight, PhD
Study category
General Health