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Daylight saving could protect Qld koalas

AAP logoAAP 23/11/2016 David Sigston

Introducing daylight saving could help stabilise the dwindling koala population in southeast Queensland, new research shows.

University of Queensland researchers have tracked the movements of koalas near roads where they are often hit and killed by cars.

The study suggests introducing daylight saving could reduce the number of koalas being hit by cars by eight per cent on weekdays and 11 per cent on weekends, as drivers change their behaviour.

As most collisions occur during twilight or darkness, extending daylight would reduce the number of deaths according to Associate Professor Robbie Wilson.

"Daylight saving time could reduce collisions with nocturnal wildlife because it would still be light when commuters drive home," Dr Wilson said.

The koala population in southeast Queensland has declined by about 80 per cent in the past 20 years.

"Cars are responsible for hundreds of koala deaths each year," researcher Dr Bill Ellis said.

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