#Animals,  #FunFacts

Wait, what about koalas?!?

How much do you really know about Koala Bears?

Well, first of all they are not even bears! They are a marsupial which means they have a pouch for their babies, like a kangaroo, sans the jumping ability. When the baby is born they climb in the pouch, chill there for about 6 months, and then come out and cling to momma for about a year.

Here is the thing about Koalas, they are dumb. Not as in they are hard to train dumb, I mean they will starve in a room full of food dumb. Nope, not exaggerating. So here is a funny/sad story. Koala respiratory¬† systems are almost identical to human respiratory systems so naturally we wanted to study this more so we had koalas in captivity. They were starving to death. The scientist couldn’t figure out why! They were giving the koalas plenty of eucalyptus leaves but the little guys weren’t eating them. Turns out koalas are so stupid that of the eucalyptus leaf is off the branch the koala does not recognize it as food!

So why are koalas so freaking stupid? The simplest answer is that it is their diet. First of all, eucalyptus is poisonous! People use eucalyptus mulch because it is a pest deterrent and these little buggers eat it as their only food source. Most of the time they don’t even drink water to wash that sh!t down.¬†

Eucalyptus is low in calories and nutrition which means the koala ends up sleeping about 20 hours a day, which I, for one, am envious of. Oddly enough one of the bodily functions that takes up a lot of calories is brain function. To compensate for the lack of calories koalas evolved to have lower brain function. Now they have smooth brains and less then optimal intelligence. Sadly this also means that their ability to evolve has been stunted. 

My favorite story about koalas is an oldie but a good. In 2014 a koala escaped from the San Diego Zoo. So what was his big day adventure? He promptly climbed a tree and fell asleep, which is where he spent the day. His people stood guard under the tree to make sure he was ok, and then when he woke up they lured him down with some delicious poisonous eucalyptus.

This post is dedicated to my friend Brian who is the smartest koala I know.

Thank you to these links for their helpful information!

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/k/koala/

https://www.npr.org/2014/02/27/283307913/koala-escapes-from-zoo-naps-and-then-gets-hungry

Koalas: Not the smartest tool in the shed

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