Wollondilly Koala’s need your help!
Wollondilly Shire Council is launching a “Koala Hotline” and we need the eyes and ears of the local community to help us find out more about this iconic Australian animal.
Despite the first ever recorded European sighting of a Koala occurring near Bargo in 1798, we still know very little about the location, health and numbers of Koala’s in the shire.
This first recorded sighting was by an exploratory party investigating the land south-west of Parramatta. The party was guided by John Wilson, who arrived on the first fleet as a convict and released in 1792, and included John Price, a servant of Governor John Hunter.
Wilson spent several years living in the bush after his release where he made good relations with the local Aborigine’s and was known to them as “Bun–bo-e”. During this time Wilson developed a good knowledge of the local bush and its fauna.
Price kept a journal of the expedition and around January 26th, 1798 he noted the first shooting of a “Pheasant” or Lyrebird, hence the name of the nearby suburb “Pheasants Nest.” Price also referred to an animal called a “Whombatt” and later that day he wrote “there is another animal that the natives call Cullawine, which much resembles the Sloths in America.” Cullawine is the Dharug name for the Koala.
Although Price is noted for the first ‘recorded sighting’ it is highly likely that Wilson was previously familiar with these animals because of his time as the ‘vagabond on the bush’ and his links to the local aboriginal community.
If you spot a koala or find evidence of their activity then give us a call 4677 1100, email any photos and information to
OR if you find an injured Koala phone Wollondilly WIRES on 4684 1656.
(from: Wollondilly Shire Council website)