A male Koala joey at Taronga Western Plains Zoo has emerged from his mothers pouch, allowing keepers a rare glimpse of the bundle of joy.
The Koala joey is approximately six months old and is yet to be named.
This is the third joey for experienced mother Rosea.
She has always been a great mother and is once again being very caring and nurturing towards her joey.
“We are really happy with how both mother and joey are doing. The joey is growing and developing well, he is quite curious and reasonably confident for his age,” Keeper Shannon Rover said.
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“The joey is currently spending most of his time on the tummy area of Rosea but in the next couple of weeks he will explore further and start riding on Rosea’s back.”
Visitors may see the new joey clinging to mum Rosea throughout the day.
The best time to see the pair is from mid-morning to lunch time, especially on a warmer day.
“Koala joeys generally will stay clinging to mum till approximately 10 months of age and then start to become more independent and begin exploring their surrounds a little,” Shannon said.
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Koala joeys stay with their mother for up to 12 months of age.
They will start to roam further and further away from their mother as they reach this age, exploring their surroundings before becoming fully independent.
“This is the first joey to emerge this breeding season. We are hopeful there will be more,” Shannon said.
Koala populations are continuing to decrease in Australia mainly due to habitat destruction and fragmentation, bushfires and disease as well as drought associated mortality in habitat fragments.