Koala Dangers and Predators
Even though Koalas live in trees, they have lots of predators they need to be careful of. They can’t run fast and they have really no defense for fighting them off. Staying out of reach in the trees can help them have protection from many predators. However, others re able to follow them into the trees or to swoop down out of the sky to get them.
The smaller a Koala is the more vulnerable they are to the different predators out there. Due to the fact that humans live in close proximity to the Koalas, there are thousand deaths annually that are the result of dog attacks. These dogs view the Koala as some type of enemy.
The dingo is very similar to a dog but they are well known wild animals living on the land around Australia. They are very aggressive predators and will consume anything they can get their hands on. There are myths that said that dingoes take human babies during the night. They find the Koala to be a great meal for them.
The fox is a very fast predator and one that also loves to feed on the Koala. They are able to get into the trees undetected. They are also very fast moving which can give them the element of surprise. A young Koala is simply no match for this type of careful and calculated predator.
Various types of feral cats live in the same areas as the Koala. They too are very fast and very quiet in their movements. They are always looking for a great meal and often find it with the Koala. They quickly grab the Koala by the neck which will kill them instantaneously.
The python is one of the largest and most deadly snakes in the world. They are often found living in the same trees where the Koala thrives. They will wrap their body around the Koala and squeeze very tightly. It takes only moments for them to kill their prey this way due to their size and their strength.
For the very small Koala’s, the eagles that fly over head are also predators. They have excellent vision which helps them to calculate their movements. Before you know it they can come in, grab the young Koala with their claws, and then be on their way.
The biggest threat to the Koala though comes in the form of humans. From 1919 to approximately 1930 millions of them were hunted. This was done in order for humans to be able to wear warm coats from that fur that were also very lovely. Today it is illegal to kill them but that doesn’t stop it from occurring.
In fact, there are some hunting safaris that occur in Australia on a regular basis. Guides that are familiar with the locations of the Koalas show them where to go to hunt them. For the trophy hunter, being able to add this exotic animal to the list of them he has successfully killed is quite a feat to brag about.
Humans also kill Koalas so that they can clear out forest areas that they want to use for something else. In many of these cases they simply don’t think that they Koalas are important enough to stop them from doing what they would like to.
The killing isn’t always intentional though from humans. For example those driving on roads that are in the forest may hit them as they drive through. They can also contaminate the forest and the water which results in Koalas dying from various viruses that can quickly spread to large numbers of them.