December 5, 2022

Koala: Solitary, asocial, coastal Australian bear

By Biodun Busari

Koala bear or koala is a herbivorous Marsupial animal native to Australia. Koalas are also arboreal, which are surviving representatives of the family Phascolarctidae. They, however, have the closest living folks which are wombats.

The koala is found in coastal areas of the mainland’s eastern and southern regions, dwelling in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, and South Australia. It is easily identifiable by its stout, tailless body and large head with round, fluffy ears and large, spoon-shaped nose.

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The koala has a body length of 60–85 cm (24–33 in) and weighs 4–15 kg (9–33 lb). Fur colour ranges from silver grey to chocolate brown.

Koalas from the northern populations are typically smaller and lighter in colour than their counterparts further south. These populations possibly are separate subspecies, but this is disputed.

The koalas have some strange behaviour, though. They can sleep for up to 20 hours a day, due to their lowest energy diet.

A koala is also a nocturnal animal, mostly active at night as well as at dawn and dusk. But despite this, it can be seen moving around during the day if disturbed by either coldness or hotness.

They are asocial and solitary animals always living within a network of overlapping home ranges, which permits contact between individual species for mating.

The koala are not typically dangerous. They only become aggressive if threatened or cornered. Asides from this, they would probably climb higher on their trees to avoid humans.