Good Call Media travelled to Queensland, Australian to film the latest moves to protect the endangered koala in the wild.
The Ceva Wildlife Research Fund has made a donation to support the development of a new vaccine that is seen as a major breakthrough in protecting the iconic Australian koala population.
The Australian federal government listed koalas as an endangered species in February 2022 due to habitat loss, which has impacted the population between 30% and 50%. The widespread problem of chlamydia infection among the reduced population of the marsupials is causing blindness, infertility and sometimes death and thus hampering the population dynamic.
The donation will fund trials required to obtain a supply permit for the vaccine from the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medical Authority (APVMA). The program is designed to demonstrate that the vaccine, to be used in the field with wild koala populations, is as effective as those that were used in the initial trials on animals in captivity, which
proved a high level of efficacy in treating chlamydia in koalas.
The Ceva Wildlife Research Fund is also contributing to the transfer of the vaccine from the field trial stage to standard production in a GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) certified environment which will result in sustainable and sufficient scale supplies being made available to immunize koalas in wildlife centres throughout Australia.
Dr. Finola McConaghy, Technical Service Manager at Ceva Australia, who is working with the Ceva Wildlife Research Fund, said: ”The only way to get real control over chlamydia in koalas is to prevent it and they’ve shown that this vaccine is effective at prevention so we need to obtain the permit if it is to be used more widely and this is a way we can have a real impact on the disease incidence in the population and protect the koala from potentially becoming extinct.”
See our full video report here: