Koalas live in climates including temperate, sub-tropical, and tropical forests with areas including woodlands and semi-arid environments (Australian Government).  Koalas are most commonly found in Australia.  They are confined to Eastern Australia.  They are most abundant from Southern Victoria (in the south) to Eastern South Australia (in the west) to Atherton Tablelands (in the north).  Koalas like coastal wetlands and forests with open canopies. 


Koalas live in trees that border rivers, streams, and other water sources, especially eucalypt trees (Lee 1988).  Koalas thrive on these eucalypt trees and maintain their primary source of nutrition from these trees.  The exclusiveness of only using mainly these trees for their habitat presents concern as koalas are currently endangered, and suspected to become extinct.  Koala habitats are diminishing because of hunting, disease, and drought (NSW Government).  There are many plans that are working to be put in place to prevent the extinction of koalas as they are seen as vital to the animal world.  They contribute to economics of Australia, and they have a close love for people as people have a fascination and love for koalas in return.  Such plans include protection under the Threatened Species Conservation Act, NSW Threatened Species Priorities Action Statement, and NSW Environmental Planning Policy No. 44 (NSW Government).


 Koalas are slow moving animals that weigh anywhere from 4 to 13.5 kg or 8.8 to 30 lbs.  They are arboreal, meaning they live in trees.  They are of the largest animals that live in trees.  Their hands and feet consist of three fingers and two thumbs which make for a strong grip when climbing trees.  Koalas are slow moving animals and are quite defenseless (Lee 1988).  They are defenseless because they are high up in the trees and have few predators because of their body size.  Koalas are also very lazy animals as they often stretch out their body to relax in the trees as well as cool down and feel the breeze.  They may also lick their body, including arms and legs, to cool down and relax (Ng 2001).  Koalas sleep around 18 hours a day, eat for three hours, and use the remaining three hours for moving around, grooming, and socializing.  Koalas only walk on the ground when they move to a different tree.  They are most often nocturnal animals as they eat and socialize with their loose-knit groups at night.  They are awake, though, for a period during the day to groom themselves.  Only one koala lives in a tree at a time (Lee 1988).  There is little competition between koalas for trees because there are many trees to go around and not nearly as many koalas.   


Habitat is important to every animal for living their life to the fullest.  Koalas have a habitat that is unique to only them.  Preservation of this habitat is necessary if we want to continue to enjoy observing and studying these fury little creatures.  I invite you to visit the Australian Government Website to learn more about how we can help to make sure koalas always have a safe environment to live in.