Stolen Koala is Found

An elderly koala (13 years old) named Banjo was stolen from an Australian wildlife park on Tuesday. Thieves had broken into Banjo’s enclosure with bolt cutters. An anonymous phone call led authorities to a dumpster outside the wildlife park, where they found the frightened and dehydrated koala in a plastic bin covered with a crate.

According to Banjo’s keeper, Tim Faulkner, “It’s good to have him back. People can’t care for this sort of thing. It’s not a dog.”

Koalas are marsupials native to Australia who feed mainly on eucalyptus leaves. They generally live 10-15 years.

To learn more about Banjo, see:
The Age

To learn more about koalas, see Animal Fact Guide’s article: Koala.

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Baby Koala at San Francisco Zoo

Koala baby at San Francisco Zoo

Photo by Heather Givner, San Francisco Zoological Society.

A baby koala will debut at the San Francisco Zoo next week. The female joey (or baby koala) began to make her way out of her mother’s pouch in January. In February, she moved all the way out of the pouch and crawled onto her mother’s back. Soon the little joey will be ready for the public!

Koalas are marsupials native to Australia. Like other marsupials, koala babies are born underdeveloped, and they must climb into their mother’s pouch to finish development. Unlike kangaroo pouches, which open towards the top, koala pouches are located towards the bottom of their bodies and open outward. The joey won’t fall out of the pouch because the mother koala uses a strong muscle to keep the pouch closed.

To learn more about the debut of the San Francisco Zoo koala joey, see: San Francisco Zoo.

Read more about koalas on Animal Fact Guide’s article: Koala.

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Koala Survives Accident

A fully-grown male koala was struck by a car going 80km/hr. Miraculously, the koala became stuck in the grill of the car but was uninjured. The driver of the car drove very cautiously 15 kilometers to the nearest vet. The koala was cut from the grill of the car and released back into the wild later the same day.

For the full story and additional photos visit 9News.

For more information about koalas, see Animal Fact Guide’s article: Koala.

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Saving More Victims of the Australian Bushfires

Jilly, eastern grey kangaroo at Healesville Sanctuary

The Healesville Sanctuary in Victoria, Australia is continuing to help thousands of wildlife survivors from the bushfires that ravaged the area last month.  They have rescued and treated lyrebirds, echidnas, koalas, and kangaroos for severe burns.

Jilly, a baby eastern grey kangaroo pictured above, was treated for burns to her feet, paws and tail. She also suffered severe dehydration and weight loss after losing her mother to the fires, so the Healesville staff has taken to bottle feeding her.

Before they can release the animals back into the wild, they’ll need to assess the suitability of the habitat as much of the land is completely scorched.

For more info: Reuters

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Australian Wildlife Death Toll in Millions Due to Fire

Sam the koala

The fire that has ravaged much of the landscape in Victoria, Australia has resulted in the death of many people and millions of native animals.

Wildlife rescuers are attempting to located injured animals, treat them, and release them into suitable habitat- a sizeable task considering the scorched, uninhabitable nature of the landscape.

For more info: LA Times

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