• Koalas are herbivorous marsupials native to the eastern and southern coasts of Australia, typically inhabiting eucalyptus woodlands.
 • They have a body length of 60-85cm (24-33in) and weigh 4-15kg (9-33lb).
 • Koalas are usually smaller and lighter in color in the north than they are in the south.
 • Koalas are not social animals and tend to only bond amongst family.
 • Males communicate with loud bellows to attract mates.
 • Baby koalas, called joeys, live in their mothers’
pouches for about 6-7 months after birth.



 • Thackory was born at the San Diego Zoo on June 15, 2011.
 • He is a smaller-sized male koala weighing in at 6.80kg or 15lb.
 • His name means “heavy.”
 • Thackory is a seasoned veteran of koala loans; he has been to Boston, Indianapolis,
and Santa Barbara. 

 • Chuckels was born at the San Diego Zoo on October 13, 2014.
 • He is a larger koala, weighing in around 9kg or about 20lb.
 • He is named in honor of former San Diego Zoo Director Charles “Chuck” Bieler, who was instrumental in bringing the first breeding group of koalas to San Diego in the 1970s.

Most species of eucalyptus are native to Australia. About 75% of Australian forests
are eucalyptus forests.

A koala’s diet mainly consists of eucalyptus leaves. An adult koala eats between 200-500 grams (0.44-1.1 pounds) of leaves every day.

Eucalyptus leaves are fibrous and low in nutrition, requiring a lot of energy to digest. To build up this energy, koalas sleep up to 22 hours each day!

Eucalytptus leaves contain water,
so koalas rarely need to drink.

Wildfires are common in Australia and have caused many eucalyptus species to adapt. Some species are known to have seeds that can withstand fire.





Climate change, forest fires, habitat loss, disease, and dog attacks are all leading to
the species’ decline.
Less than 80,000 koalas are left in the whole of Australia. American zoos provide an ark for the species as well as educating the public on these amazing marsupials.

It is estimated that more than ONE BILLON animals, including 30,000 to 60,000 koalas, perished in the Australian bushfires of 2019 and 2020. Responding to the catastrophe, the Kansas City Zoo made an emergency
donation from its Conservation Fund and raised money on social media. In total, over $33,000 was sent to support the Zoos Victoria’s Bushfire Emergency Wildlife Fund.


how you
can help

brushfire relief

Australia’s koala population is
in serious trouble.
 • A portion of every Kansas City Zoo ticket and membership directly benefits our Conservation Fund to help save wildlife in Kansas City and around the globe.
 • Participate in the Zoo’s Step Up for Conservation program at any of our food and beverage or retail locations.
 • Participate in the Kansas City Zoo Run and the fundraiser!  


Our conservation partners, Zoos Victoria, were able to rescue and rehabilitate many koalas from the
recent bushfires. The koalas are being released back into the wild where they are tracked and will continue to be closely monitored.

Continuing long-term monitoring of koala populations is increasingly important as climate change increases the frequency of extreme weather events such as bushfires and drought.


vation partners

• Chuckels is a more vocal koala and will often grunt while being carried. He can be ornery and will become fidgety when being held for too long.
 • If given the choice, Chuckels likes to sit up high in his perching and not come down low to interact with keepers.
 • Chuckels loves to eat!

This is his fourth loan and first to Kansas City.
 • Thackory has a very calm disposition and does very well being handled. Thackory has been paired with females in the breeding program, and just sired his first offspring last year!


follow us on