“Koalas are usually seasonal breeders, they produce their young in spring when the climate is benign and the leaves they eat are bursting with moisture brought by the rain. Throughout summer the young koalas grow in the pouch, leaving briefly once they are fully furred and then permanently before the onset of the following breeding season. Breeding season is easy to recognise: the otherwise calm of the forest at night is broken by the resonant bellow of the males, announcing their presence to other females and males alike. Using unique vocal folds in the upper part of their throat, koalas are able to produce rumbling, low frequency bellows that travel over long distances in the forest landscape. But why exactly were they making these noises? What information were they conveying, and to whom?…”
This is an excerpt from an article in the latest issue of Biosphere Magazine. Dr Bill Ellis and colleagues set about to solve this puzzle, and gained an insight into the lives of koalas that not many people get to see. He shares that experience with Biosphere. Read on on pages 24-30 of Biosphere Issue 9.