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Rescuing Koalas


Koalas mainly come into care if they are:

  • orphaned

  • injured, or

  • have symptoms of disease, especially Chlamydia

  • Rescuing an Orphaned Joey

  • If you see an orphaned koala joey, have a good look around for the mother. The mother may have been killed nearby. It is rare for a dependent joey to be wandering around by itself.


    If you find the mother and she is deceased, capture and contain the joey. Wrap it in a blanket, towel or jumper to keep it calm and snug. Call a wildlife carer or take the joey to the vet.

  • If you find the mother and she is alive and well, be wary. She will be wanting to protect her joey.

  • Reunite mother and joey, and then quickly retreat to see if the mother will accept the joey.

  • If the mother accepts the joey and climbs a tree, all is well.

  • If the mother does not accept the joey, wait until a suitable time to capture and contain the  joey as explained above.




    Rescuing an Adult Koala

  • If you find the mother and she is sick or injured, or if you find a male koala that is sick or injured, only approach the animal if you think you are physically strong enough to handle the animal.

  • Use a sack, blanket or towel to scoop up the animal and place it in a sturdy box, basket or animal carrier that is able to be covered.

  • Move the animal to a safe, dark, quiet, warm place away from animals and children until help arrives.

  • Otherwise do not approach the animal or attempt to physically handle the koala yourself. Koalas have very sharp claws and teeth and they will struggle.

  • Instead, place a sturdy box or washing basket over the animal and anchor it by placing something heavy on the top. Immediately call a wildlife carer for assistance.

  • Koalas with Chlamydia

  • Chlamydia symptoms on the head include discharge from the eyes, ears, or mouth.
  • Chlamydia symptoms elsewhere include a wet or dirty bottom.
  • Koalas with Chlamydia can be successfully treated with antibiotics if carers are able to capture and contain the koala.
  • If the koala is still up a tree, and you notice the symptoms of Chlaymidia, call a wildlife carer for advice and assistance to get the animal down.
  • If the koala is on the ground and requires care, see if you can get close enough to place a box or basket over the koala to stop it from moving as described above.
  • Once contained, contact a wildlife carer.
  • Please click on thumbnail to see larger image...


    Koala Koala in Cage Releasing Koala Releasing Koala Releasing Spencer