Reduce Global CO2, or all the Cuddly Koala Bears will Die

"Koala climbing tree" by Diliff - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons.
Koala climbing tree” by DiliffOwn work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons.

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

A professor has received a $5 million grant, to investigate whether rising CO2 and predicted endless drought will make the Koala’s Eucalyptus leaf diet too toxic for them to eat.

… The koala could soon be even more endangered than at present, if it turns out that climate change alters the nutritional value of the only food it can eat—Eucalypt leaves. Assistant Professor Elizabeth Neilson from the Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences from University of Copenhagen has received a $5 million grant from the Villum Young Investigator Program for the search of how the chemical structure of the leaves is disrupted.

“We are going to investigate how two distinct results of climate change, drought and elevated CO2 levels, affect the balance between nutrient and toxicant content of the Eucalypt leaves and how this affects the Koala. Eucalypt leaves are highly toxic and the koala needs to sleep or rest for 20 hours a day to efficiently detoxify the poisonous components and gain sufficient energy from their diet. Therefore, the huge amount of energy spent on detoxification is only just about made up by the nutritional value. Any shift in the eucalypt chemistry caused by climate changes may alter the balance of nutritional value and toxicity, and impact koala survival,” says Assistant Professor Elizabeth Neilson.

She and a group of colleagues founded the idea behind the project back in 2012 and she has been working in the lab and in the field almost ever since. …

Read more:

I’ve got to admit, I’d be working in the field as well, if someone gave me a $5 million grant.

But it seems deeply implausible that the Koala will be affected by any climate change we’re likely to cause. Koalas have been around for at least 20 – 30 million years, during which Australia has seen radical changes in climate, swinging from rainforest to desert. The ancestors of Koalas had a much more varied diet, but were forced to specialise when the continent dried out, during the brutal dive into the current Quaternary glaciation.

There are issues which threaten the species, such as the raging Chlamydia epidemic which is threatening to destroy wild populations. I doubt very much that climate is anywhere near as serious an issue, as the threat posed by sexually transmitted disease. A return to a warm, wet climate, as prevailed before our current cold period, would not be a threat to a species which has endured far worse.

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FJ Shepherd
February 3, 2016 1:43 pm

I guess polar bears are not cuddly enough, though it is cute when polar bears drink coke cola. Will the Koala become the new poster “bear” for the evils of climate change? When will the nonsense end? When?

george e. smith
Reply to  FJ Shepherd
February 3, 2016 2:31 pm

Well the Koala bears are already long gone. Now just a marsupial shadow remains.
Besides they are like Pandas. Too damn stupid for their own good. Humans can and do eat almost anything, which is why we are successful. Pandas, only eat at Burger King, and Koalas only eat at Taco Bell.
Well koalas are Oztralian aren’t they; what else do you need to know ??

Reply to  george e. smith
February 4, 2016 3:17 am

The Koala is not a bear. Never has been and never will be. They are also not very delicious. They taste like lamb covered in liniment. Good riddance to the species. Dirty little species. God is punishing them for their sexual practices.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  george e. smith
February 5, 2016 12:01 am

I would not be too worried about the taste of a koala, if it was the only option. Just think about what their young have to eat (Koala young eat the scat of the mother).

Fred of Greenslopes
Reply to  FJ Shepherd
February 3, 2016 8:23 pm

Polar bears could be pretty cuddly when drinking B’berg rum. And I do mean the bears doing the drinking.

Reply to  FJ Shepherd
February 4, 2016 1:16 am

Some climate observations from Australia’s past (112 years ago) seemed appropriate. Selected verses from My Country by Dorothea Mackellar:

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror –
The wide brown land for me!
Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart, around us,
We see the cattle die –
But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady, soaking rain.
Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow Gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold –
Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze.

February 3, 2016 1:47 pm

Everybody has their price, seemingly climate-related researchers have been bought and sold many times over.
30 pieces of silver brought death to Jesus.
And they gave him thirty pieces of silver. … and inquired, “What are you willing to give me if I betray Jesus to you? = What are you willing to give me if I betray
real science?

Tom in Florida
Reply to  TG
February 3, 2016 5:59 pm

The big difference being that Jesus needed Judas to betray him so he could be killed and then rise again in order to proclaim himself savior of mankind. Do you think there is any climate scientist that sees themselves as savior of mankind……………………………

Reply to  Tom in Florida
February 3, 2016 11:17 pm

Maybe not saviors of mankind, but an awful lot of climate scientists see themselves as saviors of the planet.

Leonard Lane
Reply to  Tom in Florida
February 3, 2016 11:30 pm

Ever notice how when “I love the planet” takes hold, how much their love for their neighbor decreases?

Mary Catherine
Reply to  Tom in Florida
February 4, 2016 9:53 am

Yeah–they all do.

February 3, 2016 1:49 pm

How many solar panels could you install for $5 million?

Reply to  Resourceguy
February 3, 2016 1:54 pm

How many clean wells?

Reply to  CaligulaJones
February 3, 2016 2:12 pm

How many doses of antibiotics for the chlamydia?

Reply to  Resourceguy
February 3, 2016 3:35 pm

How many prophylactics for Koalas?

February 3, 2016 1:52 pm

Anyone who has ‘cuddled’ a Koala knows that this is a mistake. They firstly claw you with their sharp fingernails and then they pee all over you. Koalas know what is best for them and that is a Manna Gum. CO2 increases make Manna Gums grow better and use less water. There has been no significant drought in Koala areas recently. Eastern Australia has been the recipient of huge rains lately and even Lake Eyre is filling up. The Koalas and the trees love the rains and it could even help them fight the Chlamydia epidemic which is the true cause of the trouble.

Reply to  ntesdorf
February 3, 2016 1:59 pm

Not sure why you would want to cuddle an animal that smells like a cough drop anyway.

Michael of Oz
Reply to  ShrNfr
February 3, 2016 3:16 pm

If you grow up with that smell, many come to love it. I use Eucalyptus oil as a general disinfectant/air freshener in the home. Kills ants and flies like a surface insecticide would, bloody magic that stuff.

Sweet Old Bob
February 3, 2016 1:53 pm

So….some dang tree hugger was hugging more than trees ?
( Koala STDs )
Just can’t trust those …..huggers !

Tom Halla
Reply to  Sweet Old Bob
February 3, 2016 1:58 pm

That’s raw!

Reply to  Sweet Old Bob
February 3, 2016 3:21 pm

While you write in jest (I suppose), it may be true.

February 3, 2016 1:57 pm

I will admit the koala is cuddlier than a coelacanth…
I think we need a new list, ala Numberwatch: number of species used to measure CAWG. Or subset: value of each species (measured by level of grant).

Gunga Din
Reply to  CaligulaJones
February 3, 2016 7:49 pm

Would the grant thing be those used to get a grant or those receiving a grant? 😎

Gary Pearse
Reply to  CaligulaJones
February 4, 2016 9:03 am

Note coelacanth (probably no stinkier than other fish), has its “c” pronounced like and “s”, robbing you of the match.

george e. smith
Reply to  Gary Pearse
February 4, 2016 9:25 am

I think the coelacanth is actually L C Smith.
Well I think those initials are something like Latimeria Chalumnae, or some facsimile thereof. But then what do I know ??

Reply to  CaligulaJones
February 4, 2016 9:22 am

I nominate pikas.

4 Eyes
February 3, 2016 1:57 pm

Koalas are increasing in numbers in and around Adelaide where I live. They are all over my golf course now whereas 20 years ago they were hard to spot. I have seen them sitting in liquidambers at my house but i have not seen them eating the leaves. The population of koalas on Kangaroo Island has grown so much that talk of a cull occurs regularly.

Robert B
Reply to  4 Eyes
February 3, 2016 2:26 pm

My parents saw one in their gum tree in Fulham. Its near the mouth of the Torrens River which winds its way through the city for 20km from the parks in the hills.
I have a sneaking suspicion that they will adapt to minor changes.

Reply to  Robert B
February 3, 2016 4:48 pm

Wait a minute, I thought they could only eat Eucalyptus leaves ?? The Koala bears are cheating science !!

Robert B
Reply to  Robert B
February 3, 2016 9:59 pm

I only know a little about their eating habits, having helped out a masters student many moons ago. They will sometimes bypass a supposedly preferred eucalypt and feed on a secondary species (occassinally, not even eucalypts). They eventually found that the koalas are looking for young leaves and don’t really prefer one species over another. They might be short of these in a drought but as another post pointed out, they easily survived the worst drought in Aus during European settlement.
I found the above clip while looking for a report on an overseas zoo that would supplement the feed to the koalas with things like apple leaves.

February 3, 2016 2:02 pm

Though often called the koala “bear,” this cuddly animal is not a bear at all; it is a marsupial, or pouched mammal. After giving birth, a female koala carries her baby in her pouch for about six months.

Reply to  jmorpuss
February 3, 2016 5:39 pm

@jmorpuss. Thanks for that. I was just about ready to point out the same fact. The meme as a “bear” came from Aussie Diggers scaring the crap out of the Yanks stationed here calling them “Drop Bears”…

george e. smith
Reply to  jmorpuss
February 4, 2016 9:36 am

Wow fancy that. I never would have guessed.
Pretty soon they’ll be telling us that a panda isn’t a bear either. Well it certainly isn’t a marsupial, as far as I know. I think it’s actually a raccoon.
Golly; do they have any other marsupials in Australia, or are Koalas about it ??
They have marsupials in New Zealand. You can find them on just about any road out in the country. I’ve never seen a native New Zealand marsupial with a yellow stripe painted over its back though.
That seems to be an identification process that is reserved for identifying Armordeeohs in places like Texas. Dunno why they chose yellow to paint them though.
g And Pluto IS a planet !

Reply to  george e. smith
February 4, 2016 9:42 am

george got into the cooking sherry! ☺

Reply to  george e. smith
February 4, 2016 9:45 am

Better he got into the cooking sherry than sharing the cooking. T’would he be cooking cherries for sharing.

Kelvin Duncan
Reply to  george e. smith
February 14, 2016 6:52 pm

They aren’t native to NZ but were introduced from Aus to establish a fur industry – big mistake. Now the Aussie possum, a marsupial that carries TB, is steadily chomping its way through all the NZ trees! Millions of dollars are spent each year in an attempt to control their population. There are also wallabies in the South Island – stinky pests that ruin pastures. There used to be some on an island off the North Island, but they were culled. However, one species was able to be re-introduced back to Aus where it had become extinct (I think it was the Palma wallaby??)
Tiresomely, NZ gets about four massive invasions of nasties from Aus each year, ranging from mozzies to fruit flies and snakes, not to forget football and cricket teams, and 86,000 migrants.

February 3, 2016 2:17 pm

The best way to save the koalas is to flatten and rehabilitate Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Hobart.
He, that’s not a bad idea. There is plenty of spare space for people in the centre of Australia where there are no koalas.

February 3, 2016 2:29 pm

Do mosquitoes bite koalas? Get ready the next pandemic is brewing and it has nothing to do with CO2.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  Resourceguy
February 5, 2016 12:05 am

Mozzies bite anything that exhales CO2, if they can get to the skin surface.

February 3, 2016 2:32 pm

Koalas are much easier for a biologist to have access to than those pesky Pikas that live along and above the treeline in America.

February 3, 2016 2:35 pm

How can you not believe in evolution after you’ve seen a kangaroo ???

Jeff F.
February 3, 2016 2:45 pm

OMG….500 pound Super Koalas; didn’t expect that!

February 3, 2016 2:47 pm

Sorry, HOW did you say the koalas caught chlamydia??

Reply to  Andrew
February 3, 2016 2:55 pm

My lawyer insists I refuse to comment !!

Reply to  Andrew
February 3, 2016 3:01 pm

Why is everybody so worried about the distant future when it’s the PRESENT that needs attention? You have hundreds of thousands of desperate refugees trying to escape the ravages of civil war, some of them drowning in an effort to get to Europe. I say forget about the koala and polar bears and the people who will be here in 100 years from now. If you truly care about the plight of man and animals, do something now. Adopt a refugee family (Oh wait, I forgot. That can’t be done with a model, and there are no grants available for it either.)

Reply to  Trebla
February 4, 2016 9:50 am

Those thousands of refugees are 85% military-age, un-accompanied militant Muslim radical males. colloquially called rapefugees, they have been responsible for thousands of rapes and tens of thousands of assaults throughout Europe and across North America in every place where they have been moved by misplaced “charity”. I respect your horror at their plight, but the oil-rich Muslim countries that caused the crisis and that are assisting their crusade as they cross thousands of miles of international borders and Muslim countries to get to the southern and eastern European borders consistently and solidly refuse to admit ANY of these males, NONE of the females, and NONE of the few children actually needing help into THEIR countries.

Reply to  Trebla
February 4, 2016 12:12 pm

The Virtue Speaking Dutch Auction today in Westminster [the original one, not the one in Wyoming or Manitoba] has certainly produced some humdingers of grants for the Syrians, who need it.
Well, correctly, promises of grants.
About 50% of the zillions promised since 2011 have been actually paid.
* Work out for yourself how much hasn’t been paid.
And, yes, the Gallant British Tax-payer – having to stump up £4 billion [in our guise as a electricity bill-payer] (the ‘-payer’ word, again!) for some offshore wind-farm being build to shred seagulls – will also generously lob in north of another £ Billion.
[PS I haven’t seen the full donor list, but I assume Saudi Arabia will be in there. Several boxes of wafers, perhaps. No ice-cream.]
And our UK government is still going to borrow £65 billion this year – best case.
Another thousand quid borrowed for every man woman and child, native born or otherwise; spent; and then they’ll come looking for repayment.
And the Gallant British Tax-payer . . .
And no sense of /Sarc in any of the above.

Reply to  Andrew
February 3, 2016 3:19 pm

Probably from biting infected people a hundred years ago or so. Crewmen on sailing ships probably averaged at least one infection per sailor. But even if we limit it to chlamydia more than 50% of the crew was probably infected. STDs require an exchange of bodily fluids. Urine usually doesn’t count (unless someone or some bear drinks it immediately), but swallowing infected blood will do it.
How likely is chlamydia to wipe out the Koalas? Not very. Bears born to infected mothers may or may not get infected. But for the first month or so, the baby depends on the antibodies from their mother’s milk. Then they develop their own immune system. In either case the offspring will have antibodies to chlamydia. Once a sufficient number of Koalas have antibodies against chlamydia, including infected bears, a phenomena known as herd immunity takes over. (When the expected number of bears infected by a bear with chlamydia drops below one, the infection dies out.)
If you want to worry about species extinction in Australia, worry about devil facial tumour disease wiping out Tasmanian Devils.

Reply to  Robert Iredell Eachus
February 4, 2016 12:06 am

There was talk recently of reintroducing a “clean” colony of tasmanian devils to the mainland as a safeguard to preserve the species.
I am not sure how far that has progressed.

Reply to  Robert Iredell Eachus
February 4, 2016 5:58 am

You have to be kidding.. Tasmanian devils are 90% mouth. If they were released on the mainland and grew to 20-30 kgs they would kill everything (including humans). Worse than drop bears.

Reply to  Robert Iredell Eachus
February 4, 2016 6:49 am

If so, how come they don’t eat people in Tasmania? Are they so PC they avoid eating leftists?

george e. smith
Reply to  Robert Iredell Eachus
February 4, 2016 9:45 am

Now you are talking about a real animal. Too bad they don’t make good house cat substitutes.
But that would be my first choice; maybe a cougar for second choice. I just love the scream that you hear when a burglar coming through the window, steps on the tail of the cougar sleeping under the window.
Never can figure out which of the two makes that scream. Guess it doesn’t really matter so long as it wakes me in time to grab the shotgun ! Well the cougar is fast enough to get out of the way of the shotgun.

Michael of Oz
Reply to  Andrew
February 3, 2016 3:21 pm

It’s the S in S.T.I. Andrew, you might get infected if you have contact with their urine.

February 3, 2016 2:51 pm

Anyhow if the leaves get too toxic (as a consequence of 0.3 degrees warming), they will just revert to being carnivores like their larger cousin the Drop-bear. Then we would really have a problem – imagine a eucalyptus tree FULL of 2/3-size drop-bears!

Reply to  Andrew
February 4, 2016 12:07 am

Well, it might cut down on the population of hoop snakes a bit.

johann wundersamer
February 3, 2016 3:07 pm

Hey mod, hey Anthony, hey all contributers:
the best 2016 EVAAH!
same as me ever was – Hans

February 3, 2016 3:07 pm

When Koalas evolved, CO2 was five times what it is now.

Reply to  Rod
February 3, 2016 5:02 pm


Gunga Din
Reply to  Rod
February 3, 2016 7:54 pm

They fed on Cotwoucalyptus trees?

Bubba Cow
February 3, 2016 3:24 pm

so … this is a press release about planning to starve and gas koalas to see what might happen …
and for a mere $5 million
must be the new science, got it

Mike McMillan
February 3, 2016 3:30 pm

We should genetically modify improve the eucalyptus trees to make them koala friendly.

Gerald Machnee
February 3, 2016 3:35 pm

I wonder if I can get a few million do study our gophers in Canada as Trudeau got briefed that temperatures are warming twice as fast here.

george e. smith
Reply to  Gerald Machnee
February 4, 2016 9:48 am

Dry ice is good for studying gophers. They really like CO2.

February 3, 2016 4:10 pm

Reblogged this on Climatism and commented:
She won’t have to look hard with her $5 million dollars of tax payer funds to find a koala to study, with Australia undergoing ‘culling’ programs to reduce, not declining but soaring numbers…

February 3, 2016 4:25 pm

A Danish investigation on the effect of CAGW on Koalas….
Yep, that makes as much sense as “The Science Is Settled”

Reply to  Analitik
February 3, 2016 4:42 pm

You don’t get it. They go to Australia for field work during dreary Danish winters, which are Australian summers. Of course, most of that field work is probably along those darned eucalypt infested beach areas around Melbourne or Sidney, or (horrors) in the eucalypt infested NSW wine country. Those toxic Aussie eucalypts grow everywhere, donchano? They go back to Denmark to analyze the data during the torrid (not) Danish summers. Poor suffering souls.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  ristvan
February 3, 2016 11:35 pm

They grow like weeds in Ethiopia!

george e. smith
Reply to  ristvan
February 4, 2016 9:54 am

We have Australopithicaeucalypts all over California. Some people claim that they aren’t native to California, but then what is; it’s a desert.
I say we should keep them; might attract some new marsupials to California. We have the native California possums, but not native koala bears.

Bob Burban
February 3, 2016 4:40 pm

It’s an historical fact that millions of koalas were culled between 1900 and 1930 …

February 3, 2016 4:41 pm

“She and a group of colleagues founded the idea behind the project back in 2012 and she has been working in the lab and in the field” ….
A good plan by Elizabeth and her mates.
Where would we like to go in winter to get out of Denmark ?
Australia’s nice I’ve heard.
A bit expensive to get there though.
Can we come up with some sort of project? Let’s go for a bit of funding and someone else can pay for it
Everybody loves Koalas. Something to do with them. Global warming, habitat, food?
Maybe CO2 affects eucalyptus leaves. Does it ? Who knows, it’ll do as a project.
Nice work if you can get it

Reply to  GregK
February 4, 2016 12:45 pm

Side-splitting magic!
Although – the science is definitively settled.
Did I read it on the BBC? Probably.

February 3, 2016 4:41 pm

Australian temperatures this century

FJ Shepherd
Reply to  AndyG55
February 3, 2016 5:45 pm

NOAA would like to adjust that graph, you know. Everything raw needs some homogenization.

February 3, 2016 4:51 pm

The main animals endangered by liberal stupidity is Humans !!

February 3, 2016 5:14 pm

Poor poor koalas!
Every time the eco-looney go to ‘save’ some CO2 endangered animal, they get very upset when they discover the animal is not endangered by CO2. Instead the animals start catching illnesses the lunatics bring with them. Not to forget the dire circumstances koala relationship encounter as they attempt to seek mates with huge contrivances wrapped on their necks.
The researchers should first practice by studying other researchers; food, sex, relationships, lack of intelligence, inability to accept reality.

February 3, 2016 5:25 pm

I live in koala habitat. DOGS kill the koalas. I’ve had to watch as my local forests have been cleared of koalas by domestic DOGS gone wild. Koalas handle drought by moving to where the tallowoods etc get more moisture. This concentration of population may make them easier picking for DOGS. But koalas survived the drought of 1902 (our driest known year for the continent and for my region) and the high heat + drought of 1915 in such numbers that 2 million could be slaughtered in a year during the 1920s for export pelts. Koalas survive searing drought, our hopelessly mismanaged fire policies and mass culls. They don’t survive DOGS.
Sadly, the people who have all sorts of beliefs about “threats” to wildlife also don’t like guns and are squeamish about baiting.
It the DOGS, Dane.

James the Elder
Reply to  mosomoso
February 3, 2016 5:55 pm

Here in the gun infested part of the US where I live, unleashed dogs with no visible collar can be assumed to be feral and treated like coyotes, which have returned with a vengeance. When dogs become a pack very little is safe.

george e. smith
Reply to  James the Elder
February 4, 2016 10:10 am

If you really want to appreciate what a total menace coyotes are, you should go to some place that has NO PREDATORS at all. (cept HSS)
NZ has no mammals hence no predators. Delightful place with ground dwelling birds all over the place.
Heck why fly when there is nothing to eat you on the ground.
I say get rid of those coyotes; that would be good for the pikas, and gophers, and prairie dogs. All manner of wonderful creatures would be able to live here without those coyotes.
California used to pay more money to professional varmint hunters to kill coyotes, than it would take to pay herd farmers, to replace all of the range herd animals they CLAIM to have lost to predatory coyotes. Not the animals the coyotes might kill, but also the ones the coyotes just found the carcass of.
Studies have shown that feral dog packs, including the local family dog get togethers kill more sheep than proven coyote kills.
Mess not with that you do not understand !

Patrick MJD
Reply to  James the Elder
February 5, 2016 12:12 am

Isn’t a bat a mammal? NZ has bats, two species if I recall.

Reply to  mosomoso
February 3, 2016 6:04 pm

Then I guess they will have to shift the conclusion of their study to CO2 promoting the increase in dog numbers (somehow – I’m sure they’ll manage it)

Reply to  mosomoso
February 4, 2016 4:13 am

bounty on a fox is $10 a proof skinstrip
bounty on a roaming loose dog is?
so some poor mutt dumped and starving is worth more than a bloody fox that kills as many native critters if not more?
let alone the lambs taken nightly
yeah a hungry dog will take a sheep or sickly calf too..but not nightly like foxes
ah yes but a dog is easier to shoot than a fox.
and I would say more -by a huge number -of Koalas get themselves wiped out on the roads especially in the adelaide hills and other areas, than by dogs.

Reply to  ozspeaksup
February 4, 2016 5:28 am

Here it’s dogs. Small or medium dogs forming active packs. Fast killers (I’ve seen one small ginger pack leader kill a wallaby in a second.) Also cats, dingoes and foxes. Some chlamydia in our populations, too.
Different stories elsewhere, but here it’s dogs in loud, active packs, not the giants you hear about in National Parks adjacent to sheep country, but fast and working together.

Reply to  ozspeaksup
February 4, 2016 6:06 am

The dogs kill for fun. Can kill 20 sheep and don’t eat them. That’s the problem. The foxes kill for food.

Reply to  ozspeaksup
February 4, 2016 2:27 pm

To back up what Mosomoso and Alex have said, it is well-fed family pooches, not “some poor mutt dumped and starving”, that do most of the killing. We used to run sheep about half a mile out of a small town and it was nothing to come out in the morning to find 10 sheep in various stages of disembowelment, either dead or trailing their guts behind them around the paddock. Foxes will attack a new-born lamb or a ewe on the ground giving birth, but there is no fox alive that can take down a healthy adult sheep and rip its throat out. That’s not fox damage, it’s dog damage. Whilst we had a few dingo crosses in the hills around us, the dingos stayed in the hills and confined their hunting to roos and the occasional calf. They were solitary hunters.
What we found was that the local family pets from town were forming a pack of about 14 dogs at night and going on a killing spree around the district just for fun. They were tail-waggers by day and killers by night. Householders were warned and warned to restrain their pooches – or else. They didn’t, so out came the rifles. Some of the dogs we had to shoot as they were in the act of killing our sheep were so tame that they would come closer to a whistle. After half a dozen were shot, the message got through to the townsfolk and dogs were kept at home of a night, The foxes and dingos were still out there, but we had no more mauled sheep.
What dogs will do to sheep they will easily do to koalas in bushland suburbs, particularly if there are no sheep about to satisfy their blood lust. I might add that we lived in a koala area. You could often see their claw marks on the smooth-barked gums.
And if you’re appalled that we shot family pets, tell it to their irresponsible owners and to our disemboweled sheep.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  ozspeaksup
February 5, 2016 12:16 am

Here in Aus, bats you see hanging from the trees in the cities and flying at night carry a virus similar to rabies. Steer well clear of a bunch of them hanging in a tree above you.

johann wundersamer
February 3, 2016 6:03 pm

and I really don’t know why nobody responds to
bloodlands: Europa zwischen
Hitler und Stalin (Gebundene
Timothy Snyder, Martin Richter
is it just ‘Feigheit vor dem Feind’.
OR plain ‘I don’t care. Meet me shopping.’
Just asking. Hans

February 3, 2016 7:36 pm

It’s too bad that increased CO2 levels have increased forest growth by about 25% over the past 200 years, which has been a huge boon to all life on earth…
Even IPCC’s 2013 AR5 report admits there has been NO increasing trends in drought frequency nor severity over the past 50 years…
If anything, precipitation has increased slightly from increased ocean evaporation in response to the tiny 0.85C of warming recovery enjoyed since the end of the LITTLE ICE AGE in 1850…
I’m sure that with this $5 million grant, the grant hounds will be able to contrive a computer model showing CO2 will eventually cause the cute little Koala bears to explode from spontaneous combustion 5 years after the “researchers” retire with full pensions intact…

Chris Hanley
February 3, 2016 9:10 pm

What are the odds against Assistant Professor Neilson finding that Climate Change™ has no effect, or could even be beneficial?

Reply to  Chris Hanley
February 3, 2016 11:45 pm

“What are the odds against Assistant Professor Neilson finding that Climate Change™ has no effect, or could even be beneficial?”
To ask the question is to answer it, as they say in France.

george e. smith
Reply to  Chris Hanley
February 4, 2016 10:17 am

Governments are not in the habit of doling out money to otherwise unemployable
” scientists “, to do research to show that nothing untoward is happening, and everything is AOK.

February 3, 2016 10:50 pm

Let them eat cake!

February 3, 2016 10:56 pm

Only just past living memory, the Federation Drought. April 1902 was the driest month in the 20th century.
“Climatologists today frequently view the Federation Drought as a major climate shift across eastern Australia from the wet period of the nineteenth century to a dry spell lasting until the mid-1940s.” If the koalas survived that, I don’t think climate will be their biggest problem in my lifetime. I actually think it’s appalling that $5 million dollars is being spent on this rather than the known immediate problems koalas have. It’s like going on a Mediterranean cruise when your roof’s leaking.

Reply to  Richard A. O'Keefe
February 3, 2016 11:15 pm

Here’s another one that’s rather older. From the abstract, “we show that a mid-Holocene ENSO forced collapse of the Australia summer monsoon and ensuing mega-drought spanning approximately 1500 yrs (sic.) [caused a collapse of Aboriginal society]”. A mega-drought lasting 1500 years? Are we to assume that the koalas went extinct then and have re-evolved in the last few thousand years, or what?
Great big droughts are bad news.
Apparently eucalypts grow better with more CO2, especially the leaves, so I think we can expect CO2 as such to *help* koalas.

Les Francis
February 4, 2016 12:03 am

Koalas in Australia are spread down the eastern coast from the tropical North to the much cooler temperate South. A large ambient temperature differential. A few degrees of temp difference is not going to be of a concern.
Koalas are very fussy eaters and of the many many species of Eucalyptus trees in Australia they only eat the leaves of very few – maybe less than ten.
The real issue with the Koalas long term is loss of habitat. – Caused by clearing and bush fires.
A certain amount of forest can only support a fixed amount of Koalas.
In case you didn’t know…. Koalas make are not mute… they have a low curious grunting sound. Very disconcerting if you are in the bush at night under a tree with a big male in it

Reply to  Les Francis
February 4, 2016 6:09 am

Particularly if it’s horny

Reply to  Les Francis
February 4, 2016 7:05 am

I definitely wouldn´t call it a “low grunting” sound. It’s more like a roar, sort of halfway between a braying donkey and a roaring lion and quite loud for such a small animal. And, yes, I have camped in the bush with a male nearby.

Kelvin Duncan
Reply to  Les Francis
February 14, 2016 7:01 pm

Aren’t there koala control programmes in certain areas where the koala population has grown to be too great? I heard an interview with a wildlife scientist who said the kills are absolutely necessary (to prevent starvation and disease) and that neighbouring koalas didn’t care a stuff when their neighbours were killed – just meant more bush tucker for the survivors!
I believe the authorities try to keep these necessary programme quiet so the greenies don’t get upset.

John F.
February 4, 2016 4:36 am
February 4, 2016 6:00 am

Mmmmmm…….Koala burgers !!

Reply to  Marcus
February 4, 2016 6:10 am

Sorry Marcus
Tastes like lamb smothered in liniment

Tom in Florida
Reply to  Alex
February 4, 2016 8:33 am

You must soak in a liberal amount of cola first. Of course then you end up with Coca Koala.

February 4, 2016 6:31 am

don’t know if reducing emissions would help the poor koala bear
here is a piece on the spuriousness of correlations between cumulative values

February 4, 2016 6:56 am

Koalas survived the last ice-age when climate in Australia was much drier than now. However the isolated population in West Australia did die out, probably because too little forest remained during the glacial maximum. Experimentsl reintroduction in WA (Yanchep) has worked well enough, so current conditions are apparently suitable.

February 4, 2016 8:38 am

So since they started in 2012, they’ve spent 3 years in the lab and field and concluded that local drought and local CO2 levels could affect local plant life. And that any change to the Eucalypt plant might affect the Koalas.
I wonder how many millions it took to reach those earth-shattering conclusions?

Gary Pearse
February 4, 2016 9:21 am

I guess my skepticism has taken a turn for the worse! Having studied how these scientists work over the past dozen years or more, I am certain if we could get their emails they would say something like:
-“The polar bear is not longer a credible or fashionable poster creature – the bu99ers are getting fat and even sunning themselves on the beaches of Churchill Manitoba on Hudson’s Bay where the Arctic ice disappears for half a year at a time”
-Hey, how ’bout the koala bear? I saw them on a post card and they are cute?
-Nah, they like it hot anyway and so do the trees they feed on
-Wait a minute, maybe the eucalyptus chemistry changes with heat. This could be a way to speculate on the only thing koala’s eat becoming toxic!”
– Nah, I even saw a video of one of the little stinkers eating a fkin apple!
– Yeah? How many people do you think saw such a video. Pack your boots and bikini we’re goin’ downunder!
– Maybe we could write the paper before we go so we can stay a bit longer.”

February 4, 2016 1:59 pm

Reducing CO2 could actually make it 0.01 degree hotter.
It’s as simple as this to PROVE that the radiative forcing greenhouse conjecture is wrong, so you need to consider the alternative paradigm I have developed from correct physics …
The Trenberth, IPCC and NASA energy budget diagrams very clearly imply that back radiation (324W/m^2) can be added to solar radiation (168W/m^2) and then, after deducting non-radiative losses (102W/m^2) the net total of 390W/m^2 supposedly explains the mean surface temperature of 288K using Stefan Bolzmann calculations, which anyone can do if they Google “Stefan Boltzmann calculator” and select the one at In fact, because the solar flux is variable, a mean of 390W/m^2 would not produce a mean temperature much above freezing point.
Now, if you use the assumption that back radiation can be included to determine the mean, then you must apply this concept for every point on the globe. There are, however, places receiving not the mean solar radiation of 168W/m^2 but over 800W/m^2 of solar radiation. This is because the solar constant is actually about 1366W/m^2 and, without clouds on a clear day, less than 40% is absorbed or reflected, thus leaving at least 819W/m^2 in tropical regions where the Sun passes directly overhead at about noon. So, instead of the 24-hour global mean of 168W/m^2 we have an extra 651W/m^2 to add to that 390W/m^2 which is the net mean. But the Stefan Boltzmann calculations for what is now 390+651 = 1041W/m^2 is 368.1K which is about 95°C.
Hence there is something very seriously wrong with the radiative forcing greenhouse conjecture, and that is because radiation reaching the surfaces of planets like Earth and Venus is not the primary determinant of the surface temperature. A totally different paradigm explains reality and the required thermal energy is supplied by non-radiative processes as is explained on my website and in my linked papers, video and book.

February 4, 2016 2:38 pm

In Australia one isn’t allowed to pick up a log in a forest, but then a wildfire sweeps through burning everything, including the koalas. Ironic times.

February 4, 2016 3:40 pm

Forget Koala bears.
Our puppies are sad, and we need to spend billions on globalclimatewarmingchange to cheer them up.

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