7 things you may not know about koalas

Friday, 28th April 2017

Destination Specialist

australia wildlife koala2 rh

How much do you know about about the koala – one of Australia’s cutest little critters?

  1. Koalas belong to the Phascolarctidae family – and are the only still-living species that do! Their closest relatives are all fossils, although the wombat is also a very distant relative.
  2. The species name Phascolarctidae derives from the Greek words for pouch and bear; in fact koalas are not bears at all, but they are marsupials and, like kangaroos, have pouches in which they carry their young.
  3. The word ‘koala’ comes from an ancient Aboriginal word meaning ‘no drink’. Koalas rarely drink water, but instead take 90% of their hydration from eucalyptus (gum tree) leaves.
  4. Eucalyptus leaves also provide the koalas’ main food source, despite being poisonous to most other animals. Koalas find a new tree each day, spending around 3 hours eating and up to 18 hours resting and digesting the very fibrous leaves.
  5. Aside from primates, koalas are the only other members of the animal kingdom that have fingerprints. Like humans, they each have their own unique fingerprints.
  6. Koalas are endemic to Australia and can be found in the wild throughout Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and the ACT.
  7. Female koalas are cougars – they love a toy-boy and usually mate with a younger male!

Koalas are one of the ten species worldwide most at risk from climate change. Join the conservation effort by visiting koalas in the wild on a day trip from Melbourne, helping to remove invasive weeds and plant new koala habitat for future generations.

 

south australia kangaroo island koalas ta

Plan your Australia holiday

Find our more about how you can encounter Australia’s compelling wildlife on a tailor made holiday by contacting our team of Aussie Travel Specialists on 01737 887 433.

See all Australia holidays

Popular blog posts

Aurora Prediction Alert

The coronal hole that has caused strong auroral storms since August 2018 remains open and has resulted in some spectacular aurora sightings...
  • Northern Lights

Thursday, 6th December 2018

Jess Weatherson

The 29th Icehotel Art Suites revealed!

The iconic Icehotel in Swedish Lapland has just opened for another winter season marking the 29th incarnation of extraordinary hotel.
  • Icehotel

Tuesday, 18th December 2018

Pam Forrest

Cathy Harlow: Hiking in East Greenland Tour Highlights

In summer 2019, Wanderlust award-winning guide Cathy Harlow is travelling again to the wild and remote East Greenland coast to guide our nine-day ‘Hiking in East Greenland’ adventure. There’s so much about East Greenland that inspires Cathy but there are a few truly special experiences that make this trip stand out, read on to find out more…
  • Adventure
  • Inspire Me

Wednesday, 24th October 2018

Cathy Harlow

Other blogs you may like

8 Top Wildlife Encounters in Western Australia

Find out where and when in Western Australia you can experience top wildlife encounters, from orcas to quokkas.
  • Wildlife

Thursday, 4th August 2016

Destination Specialist

Northern Territory Safari: Exploring Australia’s Top End

Our Head of Worldwide Product, Liz, stayed at Bamurru Plains in northern Australia where she discovered great hospitality and an abundance of wildlife...
  • Travel Stories

Thursday, 29th October 2015

Liz Lunnon

3 unmissable World Heritage Sites Down Under

Our in-house Travel Writer, Will Gray shares his top three 'must-visits' when heading to Australia and New Zealand's World Heritage Sites.
  • Inspire Me

Thursday, 23rd November 2017

Will Gray