In pictures: evacuating Mallacoota’s koalas
Mallacoota, a small holiday town in the East Gippsland region of Victoria, was hard hit by the New Year’s Eve bushfires.
With no medical facilities to receive and treat wildlife, the towns koala population had little chance of survival.
The Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) decided to establish a triage centre in Mallacoota to assess wildlife and provide the first aid necessary to treat and stabilise the animals.
However, the triage centre was insufficient for those koalas with extensive burns that required ongoing veterinary care to recover.
Partnering with the Australian Defence Force, DELWP initiated an evacuation plan to Zoos Victoria’s specialised facilities in Melbourne.
On Tuesday 21 January, Australian Geographic photographer Doug Gimesy accompanied the Australian Defence Force and DELWP officials on the evacuation of six koalas.