Credit: Julie Adil

Spotting the Signs:
A Guide to Identifying Koalas in Need

Koalas are facing significant challenges to their survival due to factors such as loss and fragmentation of their habitats, disease, and deaths caused by both vehicle collisions and dog attacks.

By learning to recognize signs of illness or injury in koalas, you can take an active role in supporting koala conservation efforts and potentially saving the lives of these iconic Australian animals.

Indicators of a sick or injured koala

Look for one or more of these signs to identify if a koala is sick or injured

Inflamed, red, puffy, crusty, and/or weeping eyes

A koala sitting on a branch with red, crusty eyes.
Credit: Julie Adil
A koala with conjunctivitis with weeping eyes.
Credit: Friends of the Koala Inc.

Dirty bottom

A koala in a tree with a dirty, brown, bottom.
Credit: Julie Adil

Sitting at the base of a tree or lying on/beside a road

Credit: Renee Rivard

Skinny and emaciated appearance

Credit: Linda Barnes – Queensland Koala Crusaders

Signs of cuts or bleeding

Credit: Amy Wregg – WIRES

If you encounter a koala displaying any of these symptoms, it is crucial that you contact a local wildlife rescue or care organization as soon as possible. Utilize our map here to find the contact information for the organization nearest to you.

You can also prepare yourself to assist koalas on the road by building a DIY wildlife car kit. Learn more about how you can do this and the supplies you’ll need here.

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