With fluffy ears round heads and spoon shaped noses koalas are known for their loveable face. But this sleepy Australian tree devours are full of surprises. Koalas are not bears. They are not placental or ‘eutherian’ mammals, but MARSUPIALS, which means that their young are born immature & they develop further in the safety of a pouch. It’s incorrect to call them ‘Koala bears’ because their correct name is simply ‘Koalas’.
FUN FACTS ABOUT KOALAS
- Koalas are mostly nocturnal. Nocturnal animals are awake at night and asleep during the day. Koalas, however, sleep for part of the night and also sometimes move about in the daytime. They often sleep for up to 18-20 hours each day.
- An adult koala eats about 1/2 – 1 kilogram of leaves each night.
- There is a myth that Koalas sleep a lot because they ‘get drunk’on gum leaves. Fortunately, this is not correct!Most of their time is spent sleeping because it requires a lot of energy to digest their toxic, fibrous, low-nutrition diet and sleeping is the best way to conserve energy.
- After venturing out of the pouch, the Joey rides on its mother’s abdomen or back, although it continues to return to her pouch for milk until it is too big to fit inside. The joey leaves its mother’s home range between 1 and 3 years old, depending on when the mother has her next joey.
- FemaleKoalas are fully mature by about 2 yearsof age and males by their third or fourth year. By this time, they need to have found their own home range, either in a home range left vacant by a dead Koala or in a new area of the forest. This is one reason why Koalas need quite large areas of habitat.
- Koalas do not live-in rainforests or desert areas. They live in the tall eucalypt forests and low eucalypt woodlands of mainland eastern Australia, and on some islands off the southern and eastern coasts. Queensland, NSW, Victoria and South Australia are the only states where Koalas are found naturally in the wild. The Australian Koala Foundation believes that the Australian Government should be responsible for the protection of all Koala habitat on private land. The current fragmented approach of each State being responsible for its own Koalas is not working.
KOALAS IN DANGER
Habitat loss is the greatest threat to Koalas. The main reasons for this are land clearing, bushfires and diseases of the eucalypts, like ‘dieback’ which cause the trees to die. The AKF wants a Koala Protection Act, which means that Koala trees can’t be touched.
Recently due to the Australian bushfire more then 60,000 koalas got killed and hurt in the fire. More than 60,000 koalas were among the animals badly affected by the bushfire crisis in Australia a year ago, according to a report commissioned by the World-Wide Fund for Nature-Australia.
The worst losses were on Kangaroo Island in South Australia, where the conservation group estimates more than 41,000koalas were killed or harmed by the ferocious fires. More than 11,000 were affected in the state of Victoria, nearly 8,000 in New South Wales (NSW), and nearly 900 in Queensland.
STEPS TO SAVE KOALAS
If u want to save these lovable creatures so that they might not get extinct like other animals so we should donate to help the agencies who are doing work to save them. Following are some steps we can do to save koalas:
- We can donate To Koala Rehabilitation Centers, Hospitals, And Wildlife Parks.
- We can adopt a Koala.
- We should support Australian Fire Services.
- We can plant a Koala Food Tree.
- We should spread Information to Friends and Family.