Australia unveiled on Monday a £25m million plan to help bring its koala population back from the brink, following a rapid decline in the furry marsupial’s fortunes.
The Australian Koala Foundation estimates there may be as few as 43,000 koalas left in the wild, down from a population believed to number more than 10 million prior to European settlement of the continent in 1788.
"Koalas are a national treasure," said Gladys Berejiklian, premier of New South Wales state, in announcing her government’s conservation plan.
"It would be such a shame if this nationally iconic marsupial did not have its future secured."
Habitat loss, dog attacks, car strikes, climate change and disease have taken their toll on one of Australia’s most recognisable animals.
The move follows an independent report in late 2016 that recommended a clearer strategy to deal with the population decline.