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The Koala Blog

Koala cuteness, conservation and news from the front line.

Koala Kindy March 2024

Koala Kindy February 2024

Koala Kindy is one of our favourite updates each month and we know you guys all love to hear about the tiniest members in our care.

We have more exciting news about our joey releases! This year has been our busiest for having joeys admitted to our Koala Hospital and Care Centre in quite a while, which also means we have rescued, rehabilitated and released more joeys than in previous years!

Joeys, like many other babies are vulnerable at birth and rely on the care of their mother for up to eighteen months of age. There are many reasons joeys come into our care – when they are orphaned, injured or their mother cannot be found.

It is quite a mission to support a joey throughout their journey from rescue to successful wild release. It is cause of much celebration for everyone at Friends of the Koala when we achieve this. This season we released eleven joeys from our Care Centre. This number doesn’t count the joeys who came in healthy with their mothers and were then re-released without requiring any intervention or extra care.

We currently have another ten joeys in either Koala Kindy or Home Care – all of whom are to be released when their time comes. It goes without saying that the team does everything we can to ensure koala joeys are given their best chance at survival at every stage of care. Unfortunately, however, in some cases, mother nature has other plans. Some of the joeys we care for will be lucky and thrive in the wild after our care, while a few will not be as successful and despite our best efforts, may not survive on their own.

We like to celebrate the lucky ones, the resilient ones, the ones we have successfully supported to life in the wild and who otherwise would have perished and would like to share some good news with you. While we frequently hear reports of our released koalas doing well in the wild, two of the Friends of the Koala joeys released in 2022 and 2023 have recently been photographed and you can read how they are going below! We have a very tough job at times and seeing joeys that we helped get to where they are now out in the wild thriving is the BEST.

Kookie

Kookie was a hand reared joey released in March 2023. We now estimate her to be just over two years old. She spent six months in home care and Koala Kindy at Friends of the Koala after her mum was hit by a car in September 2022. A member of the public saw the accident and found Kookie on the road, thrown from her mum’s back. Luckily Kookie only sustained minor injuries and thrived in care. Now she is having a baby of her own! Oh Kookie you beautiful girl, we are just thrilled with this news!

Kookie with a pouch young joey
Kookie spotted in March 2024 with a pouch young joey – you go girl!! We love you!!

Keogh

And who remembers Keogh? The first photo was taken back in May 2022 when Keogh was released to the wild and the second is of Keogh now as an adult koala – looking like he is doing really well! We estimate him to be about three years old. Keogh weighed less than 300g and was only just coming out of the pouch when he was admitted with his mum to our Care Centre. Unfortunately, his mum, Meggs, had an incurable disease and didn’t make it. Keogh was taken into home care and struggled with his health, but with TLC he rallied and was successfully released eight months after admission. He stole the hearts of everyone at the Care Centre and has become a handsome, healthy, wild koala! Go Keogh!!

Keogh was released back in May 2022
This is Keogh when he was first released from Friends of the Koala back in May 2022
Keogh is now a 3 year old adult koala doing well in the wild
Keogh in March 2024 – doesn’t he look good?! We just adore seeing old friends thriving in the wild!

And now onto our current joeys! In our January update, we mentioned that Boorie and Nimbus were off in plantation getting ready for release and since then they too are off on their adventures in the wild! Meanwhile, Hip Hop, Johnny, Brown Sugar and Maleny are all heading out to plantation in about a weeks time – how exciting!!

Here is an update on the other little guys in our care:

Cygnet

Cygnet’s gut issues have settled and she is now steadily gaining weight, her drooling also seems to have resolved itself – which may have been caused by a small mouth ulcer. She also had a slight irritation in one of her eyes that has fixed itself without intervention. Cygnet has now joined Ayla in Koala Kindy. We love these sweethearts.

Cygnet joined Friends of the Koala when rescued with her mum
Cygnet

Ayla

Ayla has graduated to Koala Kindy and seems to enjoy that much more than Home Care – this little girl has a feisty personality and likes her space (away from humans). She is also getting better at taking supplements, which she struggled with initially, and has put on weight this week. Ayla is almost the same age as Cygnet so hopefully they will become good friends and enjoy each others company – it certainly looks like it!

Rescuing joeys is time and cost intensive - but man are they worth it!
Ayla and Cygnet

Emerson

Ah little Emerson is doing well and his nasty fungal infection has almost completely resolved. You all probably already know when joeys are very young and vulnerable, they need continuous specialist support from experienced carers. Emerson’s infection needed regular attention and because of this he had quite a lot of hands-on treatment. For this reason his introduction to Koala Kindy and the process of rewilding from home care might take a little longer. In ALL situations we do our best to limit human interaction, however, joeys need quality care first, rewilding afterwards. Emerson joins little Droplet in his introduction to the Care Centre.

Emerson was a tiny joey when he arrived at Friends of the Koala - look at him now!
How much has little Emerson grown?! Remember when he was tiny?

Droplet

This brings us to a new joey we haven’t introduced you to yet. Droplet was rescued in Monaltrie when separated from his mum – we don’t know why. He was around 1.8kg on admission and too small to be separated from mum in the wild and survive. Droplet was initially treated for injuries associated with a tree fall and with a little dose of TLC in home care, he appears to be gaining weight, behaving normally and all previous signs of injury have resolved. We cross our fingers for this little one and will keep you updated.

Friends of the Koala was founded in 1986 by a group of concerned citizens
Drop a ❤️‍🩹 for Droplet

Kelso

Gorgeous Kelso is doing well and has recovered from his chlamydia treatment – you might remember, he was one of the youngest admitted in quite a while with chlamydial conjunctivitis. We hope he can head off to plantation in the very near future, likely with the next round of joeys in a month or so.

It is quite a mission to support a joey through this journey and a successful wild release is cause for much celebration for everyone at Friends of the Koala.
Kelso

Hobi

Sometimes koalas and joeys come to us in such a compromised condition that prognosis is very poor and then they prove us all wrong and their condition improves considerably. Fortunately, this is the case with little Hobi. Found by a member of the public, he weighed just 750g on admission at approximately eight months old. He would have just started spending some time on mum’s back and we do not know how they were separated.

Hobi had difficulty breathing, his body temperature was too low to register and he was very poorly. However, with some intensive care, Hobi slowly warmed and perked up. After just a few days you wouldn’t believe this is the same little boy! Thanks to the swift action from the member of the public – we think Hobi was saved just in time. In the hands of his amazing home carer Liz he is eating, climbing and looking very bright eyed – his turnaround is amazing. We are really thankful to be able to save koalas who would otherwise not make it.

We hope you enjoyed our big news this month’s update and loved seeing old friends.

We know that you are all invested in the health of our koalas and we know it saddens you too, to hear about their loss of life. If you have any questions please email us: info@friendsofthekoala.org.

We invite you to read more about our Koala Hospital and the life cycle of a joey who comes into care with us and other sections of our website that you might find interesting:

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