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Published On: 15 Mar 2023

First Koala to receive Currumbin Wildlife Hospital chlamydia vaccine doing better than ever – with a joey in her pouch!

PLUS Vaccine could soon be distributed around the country!

2 years ago, ‘Anne Chovee’ was the first wild Gold Coast Koala to receive lifesaving treatment as part of a Chlamydia Vaccine Program, developed by Currumbin Wildlife Hospital and Queensland University of Technology researchers.

Recently, she was collected from the Elanora population for a scheduled health check, bringing a little guest along with her.

“Anne Chovee is a really special Koala for this program, the first Koala to be vaccinated, and now she’s doing better than ever, passing all her health checks with flying colours and with a joey in her pouch. It’s great news for everyone involved.” Research Supervisor Lewis McKillop.

The program aims to establish the level of vaccination required within an infected Koala population to reduce the overall incidence of chlamydia and improve the associated fertility so that the population stabilises or increases.

Over 60% of Koalas are admitted to Currumbin Wildlife Hospital due to the effects of chlamydia and of the remaining 40% of admissions, a significant number of Koalas are showing signs of the disease. Clinical chlamydia is one of the leading contributors to the species’ dramatic population decline.

More than 250 wild local Koalas have now been vaccinated. This includes all Koalas treated and released through Currumbin Wildlife Hospital, as well as those in the Elanora population

The vaccine is now undergoing registration by the APVMA so that it can be provided more widely to Koala carers across the country. Production of the vaccine for registration will be carried out by Zoetis Australia and CSIRO.

The cost of Currumbin Wildlife Hospital’s chlamydia vaccine research project has been calculated to be $1,057,109 over a 5-year period.

The program would not be possible without the generous support of the Neumann Family, Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate, The City of Gold Coast, WildArk, Rotary Currumbin Coolangatta Tweed and WWF-Australia.

The cost to treat one Koala suffering from clinical chlamydia is $7,000, due to the long term rehabilitation and medical treatment required.

Please support Currumbin Wildlife Hospital by donating today so we can provide our Koalas with the very best care.

For more information or to donate:

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