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Northern/Queensland Koala (Joey)

Phascolarctos cinereus


At birth naked and blind and about 5 grams in weight. Stocky body with longish legs and arms. Broad, flat skull which, in comparison with the rest of the body, is quite large. Cat-like eyes that are round and smallish and of which the pupils are vertical slits. Large, bare, flattened nose. Ears are fluffy with longer white hairs. Thick, oily fur.


Up a Gum tree, at Kingaroy.


Gestation period is 34 - 36 days and birthing occurs between August to May. This short gestation period results in the birth of the young (neonate) in almost embryonic form. This undeveloped, naked and blind joey is littler than an average human's shortest finger. It begins immediately the long trek to mum's pouch, where it finds a nipple/teat and becomes attached. The mother's teat extends quite a long way into the newborn and then becomes engorged (filled to excess), assuring complete sealing and attachment. Birth weight is around 5 grams. Joey stays completely encased in mother's pouch until about 5 to 6 months, when it then begins to poke it's head out, for a sticky-beak at the outside world. Mum now begins to produce a very sloppy, special kind of soft green faeces (pap). This is fed to the joey, to introduce micro-organisms, that will help the young one digest the Eucalyptus leaves. As the joey grows, it's mother's milk increases gradually in thickness, protein content. As the weaning period begins (6 months to 12 months), the joey emerges more often from the pouch and will begin to ride on mum's back. From about 10 months, the little one begins to explore but only for short times and distances. This gradually increases, until the joey no longer is dependent on it's mother - 12 months - 24 months. At 3+ years old it is now classed as an adult koala. Snug as a bug, in your mother's pouch You've been cradled there since birth But your inquisitiveness has now led you To look out on this Earth And I marvelled as your little head Popped in and out of your cosy bed And free of Chlamydia you appear to be As you looked around from out that tree And I pray - that healthy - you will stay. References:- Locating Koalas in the Australian Bush - Scott Buckingham. Australia's Ancient Ones. Koalas - Ken Phillips. Reader's Digest Great Illustrated Dictionary.

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1 Comment

armadeus.4 3 years ago

That is a very cute baby koala! Wonderful spotting Single D. Thank you for sharing :)

Single D
Spotted by
Single D

Kingaroy, Queensland, Australia

Spotted on Oct 8, 2020
Submitted on Nov 1, 2020

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