The impact of the circumstances surrounding the suspicious death of a healthy koala in Laurieton continues to reverberate throughout the community.
The koala was found in the Henry Kendall Reserve on October 19.
Police said the condition of the koala, and the way in which it was found, were highly suspicious. They are treating the incident as an act of animal cruelty.
Port Macquarie Koala Hospital clinical director, Cheyne Flanagan, was reticent to discuss the exact details of the injuries but said staff and volunteers were "pretty disgusted".
"The vast majority of our staff and volunteers don't know the details and are very sensitive (toward protecting koalas)," she said.
"They come here to help out and enjoy. If they want to talk about it we will. But those who do know are pretty disgusted.
"A detailed post-mortem took four hours to complete; she was a beautiful, healthy female who suffered a badly fractured mandible (jaw or jaw bone) and a fractured spine.
"Those two injuries are conducive to a road strike, fall from a tree or an act of cruelty.
"However, the koala was found in a reserve about a kilometre from Ocean Drive and on a dirt road.
"There are no other injuries consistent with a road strike - including abrasions or bruising at the injury site."
Ms Flanagan said the injury to the koala's chest is of most concern.
We want people to come forward with information. We have a reward that will be considered if it leads to find the person or persons responsible.Cheyne Flanagan
She described it as a small wound but quite deep and clean.
"We want people to come forward with information. We have a reward that will be considered if it leads to find the person or persons responsible," she said.
"Someone knows something or someone involved.
"You can't have a koala - or any other animal - die with those kinds of injuries.
"We are urging people to look at their mates or family members and particularly those with bow and arrow or compound bows."
Ms Flanagan said the police believe the matter is an act of animal cruelty.
"This kind of thing has to stop. An innocent animal has been killed.
"These are a threatened species and in serious decline now.
"There is a substantial fine for killing protected fauna," she said.
Investigations into the circumstances surrounding the animal's death continue.
Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or the Crime Stoppers website. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.
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