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  • You're watching FreeSchool!

  • Let's learn about koalas!

  • Although you may have heard them called koala 'bears,' koalas are not bears at all!

  • Like bears, koalas are mammals, which means they are warm-blooded, have fur, and feed

  • their babies milk.

  • Unlike bears, koalas are a special kind of mammal called 'marsupials.'

  • Marsupials have pouches to carry their babies in for a few months after they are born.

  • Kangaroos are probably the most famous marsupials, but koalas have pouches too!

  • Baby koalas are called joeys.

  • When they are born, they are only about the size of a jellybean.

  • They have no fur and their eyes and ears are closed.

  • Koala joeys will stay in their mothers' pouches for about six months.

  • Once a baby koala comes out of the pouch, it will hang onto its mother's back or stomach

  • and stay with her for another six months.

  • Full grown koalas reach lengths of 24 to 33 inches or 60 to 85 cm, and weights of up to

  • 33 lbs or 15 kg, although the females are usually much smaller.

  • Koalas are native to eastern Australia, where the eucalyptus forests they call their home

  • grow.

  • They are herbivores and eat almost exclusively eucalyptus leaves.

  • Although there are about 600 types of eucalyptus trees in Australia, koalas will only eat about

  • 120 of them, and an individual koala will only eat leaves from about 4 to 6 types.

  • Eucalyptus trees are both food and a home for koalas.

  • Koalas have short, curved claws, ideal for climbing trees, and two thumbs on their front

  • paws that help them to grip small branches.

  • They rarely even come to the ground to drink: the name 'koala' is from an Aboriginal word

  • meaning 'no drink,' because koalas get most of their water from the leaves they eat.

  • Koalas spend almost all of their time in the treetops, eating, or more likely, sleeping.

  • Koalas usually sleep between 18 and 22 hours a day - it takes a lot of energy to digest

  • eucalyptus leaves.

  • Eucalyptus leaves are poisonous to most animals, but koalas have an extra-long digestive system

  • that allows them to break down the leaves without being hurt by the poison.

  • Although koalas are not currently endangered, they are in trouble.

  • Once they were hunted in large numbers for their soft fur.

  • Although they are protected now, they need plenty of eucalyptus trees - about 100 trees

  • per koala - to have enough food to eat.

  • As the forests they live in are cut down by humans, koalas have fewer and fewer places

  • to live.

  • If we want to make sure that koalas stay healthy and happy, we need to protect their habitats

  • so they have enough trees to call home.

  • I hope you enjoyed learning about koalas today.

  • Goodbye till next time!

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All About Koalas for Kids: Koalas for Children - FreeSchool

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    rihrong posted on 2017/09/08
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