Cute California Koalas on Loan to CNY Zoo This Summer: Come See ’em!
A pair of adorable female koalas are spending their summer vacation in Central New York!
Kumiri and Kolet are taking a few months away from their home at the San Diego Zoo and will soon be observable at the Rosamond-Gifford Zoo's new "Koala Outpost."
Zoo officials said the pair will need some time to get acclimated to their new summer digs, but eventually they'll be greeting regular zoogoers during normal admission hours. The koalas are staying at the Rosamond Gifford Zoo until the beginning of September as a part of the Koala Conservation and Education Loan Program.
Hosting the furry marsupials is a bit of an honor, as koalas can't just go anywhere. The Australian government closely monitors koala habitats and only 10 zoos in the U.S. have been approved to house them.
FUN FACTS ABOUT KOALAS
Here are 5 things you may not know about koalas:
- Koala means "no drink" in Dharug because their water intake mostly comes from eucalyptus leaves.
- Eucalyptus is poisonous and koalas are one of the few animal species with a digestive system that can handle it.
- Whereas most animals have several different species, there is only one koala species. It's currently estimated that between 40,000 and 80,000 are left, and that number is dwindling due to deforestation.
- "Bear" is often attached to the end of "koala," but they're far from bearlike, and in fact have more in common with kangaroos due to their front-facing pouch for young.
- Koalas sleep up to 18 hours a day. Jealous?
For the latest updates on how Kumiri and Kolet are doing at their vacation spot, follow the Rosamond-Gifford Zoo's Facebook page.
DON'T FORGET THE ELEPHANTS
As if that wasn't enough reason to come to the Rosamond Gifford Zoo this summer, there's still the "miracle" baby elephant twins, Yaad and Tukada, now 6 months old and going strong!