Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Koala Bears

Awww! They're so adorable! How did I come to write about this? I had a thought last night: If I could cuddle with any animal at that moment what would it be. But that's not the only reason, while stumbling, I came across an article that said that the longest sleeping animal (technically mammal) is the koala bear, which would fit in with my laziness. Koala's sleep around 19-22 HOURS per day. And they sleep on eucalyptus trees, which is what they feed on: eucalyptus leaves; and it's also their source of water. They're lucky creatures, at least they get to wake up to breakfast in bed. Chilling. Eucalyptus leaves are highly poisonous if consumed in large amounts, but Koalas are one of the only animals that can feed on only eucalyptus leaves. They can be found in a lot of parts of Australia, both North and South.

As you can see, on the collage I wrote "Phasclarctos Cinerus" which is their scientific name. The word "koala" itself can be defined as "no water" which is in reference to the fact that these animals are able to survive for days without water, just like camels. A lot of people call these animals "Koala Bears" even though they have nothing to do with the bear family; they are actually marsupials. In case you were wondering, marsupials are animals that carry their young in their pouches. Koalas range from brown to grey in terms of their color of fur. And something else...
An albino koala!

What's amazing is that even though koalas have two thumbs, their fingerprints resemble humans and may even be confused with a humans fingerprint. The koalas are able to conceive one offspring at a time  and their offspring are called "joey" just like that of a kangaroo. Their young are born after a month of mating and once born, they are 2 cm big with no fur. It is for this reason that the mother carries her young in her pouch for seven months, in order to regulate its body temperature. After that, they climb onto their mothers' back. The male and female koalas can be told apart by a scent patch located on their chests; a large scent patch indicates that it's a male.

P.S. Wouldn't you want to cuddle with a koala?

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