Conservation Status
The koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) is an
arboreal herbivorous marsupial native to
Australia, and the only extant
representative of the family

The koala is found in coastal regions of
eastern and southern Australia, from
Adelaide to the southern part of Cape York
Peninsula. Populations also extend for
considerable distances inland in regions
with enough moisture to support suitable
woodlands. The koalas of South Australia
Cleland Conservation Park is a
conservation park in the Adelaide Hills,
South Australia, 12 kilometres (7.5 mi)
from Adelaide City centre. Cleland
Conservation Park conserves a significant
area of natural bushland on the Adelaide
Hills face and includes the internationally
popular Cleland Wildlife Park and the
popular tourist destinations of Mount
Lofty summit and Waterfall Gully.

The Wildlife Park is accessible by sealed
road from both the South Eastern
Freeway and Greenhill Road, and on foot
on a formed but steep track from
Waterfall Gully or Mount Lofty. A limited
public bus service operates (Route 823: 3
journeys each day). A fee is payable to
enter the Wildlife Park (but not to the
Conservation Park except for car parking
at Mt Lofty summit).

Cleland Wildlife Park offers visitors an
opportunity to walk through large
enclosures and interact with Australian
animals such as kangaroos, koalas and
emus, and to see others including
wombats, dingos and many bird and
reptile species. The park also has a
variety of rare and endangered species
such as the Yellow-footed Rock Wallaby,
Bush Stone-curlew and Brush-tailed

Facilities include a souvenir shop, cafe
and toilets. Many visitors pay to be
photographed holding koalas. Several
other options are available to visitors,
including an Aboriginal guide on a
Cultural Tour of the Yurridla Aboriginal
Trail, which explains dreaming stories of
dingoes, emus, koalas and Yurrabilla, the
creation ancestor, and a nightwalk,
uncovering the secrets of the bush.

Opening times are from 9.30 a.m. to 5.00
p.m. daily (except for Christmas Day)

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Quiz #352 Results
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1.  Cleland Wildlife Preserve, Adelaide, Australia
2.  Mount Lofty Scenic Route No. 51 to Mount Lofty Summit Road
3.  Smokey the Koala
Answers to Quiz #352
May 20, 2012
1. Where was the picture taken?
2.  What highway would you take to get there?
3.  What resident just turned 19 years old?
Photo courtesy of Ron Fitzpatrick.
The Clue
The cap on the assistant reads

National Parks and Wildlife
South Australia
Comments from Our Readers
This picture of Smokey the Koala, who turned 19 on February 23rd of this year, and
Andrew Yeiser was taken at the Cleland Wildlife Park, which is part of the greater
Cleland Conservation Park.                                                                  
Daniel Jolley

N.B.  Correct, except Andy is not speaking with Smokey. He's retired now and makes
few public appearances.  Oh, I mean Smokey's retired, not Andy.

I think this one's name is Rusty, but I can't remember. Either way, he wasn't really
keen on holding a conversation, just wanted to take his afternoon nap.  Oh, again, I
meant the bear...                                                                                     - Q. Gen.

I guess I jumped to the conclusion that since he was grizzled and gray that it was the
birthday boy (again, not referring to Andy). LOL                                   
Daniel Jolley

Love koalas! I do have to admit that for a few moments the quiz had something to do
with the San Diego Zoo's koalas. After all, outside of Austraila they have the largest
number of koalas in the world. But it didn't look quite right. So going with the obvious I
went to the Southern hemisphere. The logo on the hat helped me find the correct park
in Austraila.                                                                                     
Sally Garrison

Another great puzzle and I absolutely LOVE Koala Bears!  Started by reading the hat on
the worker and then googled National Wildlife & Parks + Southern Australia +
Birthday and went to the first site which was the Department of Environmental and
Natural Resources at  

Clicked on Plants, Animals/Koalas.  Then searched on site for Birthday, which led to a link for
"Smokey" 19th Birthday!
                                                                               Diane Legere

Love the picture of the koala! Where is the duck-billed platypus?              
Grave Hertz

Another fun quiz. Thanks.                                                       
Margaret Waterman

JoEllen and I visited this very same park about 10 yrs ago. For a clue, I focused on the
Rangers Cap; a dead giveaway.                                                                 
Jim Kiser
Congratulations to Our Winners

Sally Garrison                Angel Esparza
Fiona Brooker                Diane Legere
Margaret Paxton                Mike Dalton
Daniel Jolley                Donna Jolley
Margaret Waterman                Jim Kiser       
Robert Austin                Marilyn Hamill
Gus Marsh                Kevin Beeson
Moshe Schaeffer                Arthur Hartwell
Nicole Blank                Claudio Trapote

Robert and Donald McKenna
Quiz Poet Laureates
Cleland Wildlife Park off Mount Lofy
Summit Road near Adelaide, Australia in
Southern Australia.

To get there:

1. Mapquest Drive from San Francisco,
california to Seattle, Washington and then
kayak across the ocean - through Hawaii
and Japan to Northern Australia and drive
south through Adelaide for about 13,650
miles and 55 days.

2. Orbitz or ?? More direct and shorter
route: Book a flight from Los Angeles,
California to Australia aboard American
Airlines Quantas to Sydney or Melbourne
and on Adelaide - ie 26 hours travel time
arriving two days later and then rent a
car or book a tour bus.

btw: is Ron your brother or your Dad?

Mike Dalton
Chairman, Transportation Committee
Forensic Genealogy

How Robert Solved the Puzzle and Learned about Koalas
Well, I got off into the weeds on this one for a few minutes.

I initially thought it was going to be really easy. I'd just google 'koala
turns 19', or some variation thereof, and the answer would magically
appear. Sadly, after several permutations yielded no results, I had to
give up on that line of attack (It turns out 'koala celebrates 19th
birthday' was the winning combination, but I didn't discover that
phrase until after I found the answer).

The patch on the employee's cap seemed like the logical place to
start, so I typed in 'South Australia' 'National Parks Wildlife' and
found the Department of Environment and Natural Resources
(DENR) page. I went to the Parks and Gardens tab and initially
clicked on 'All Parks'. Here I discovered that they had over 110 parks
listed on the site. This seemed like too much to go through, and after
poking around on the site for a few more minutes and not
finding anything I decided to go back to the picture and try something

Frustratingly, though, the picture didn't offer much more in the way
of clues. Apart from the patch on the employee's cap, there was
apparently nothing more to say where this photograph was taken. It
was then that I noticed the title of the picture in the URL: 'Andy and
friend exchange a word'. I thought it was possible that the koala and
not the older gentleman was Andy, so I googled 'Andy the koala' and
discovered that there was a koala by that name, and possibly more
than one. I found references to Andy at The Currumbin Wildlife
Sanctuary, the Australia Zoo, and again in Melbourne; nothing,
though, in South Australia.

After several more minutes entertaining ideas like Andy the koala being a traveling attraction
that went from park to park, and looking for references to 19 year old residents in those parks,
I decided to go back to the beginning and start over. It was then that I found the Cleland
Wildlife Park tab on the DENR site and the article about Smokey celebrating his 19th birthday.

Thanks again for another good test Colleen. It was a pleasant
morning learning about koalas and Australia. Not a bad way to start
the day.

Robert Austin
Quiz Number 352    -----     20 May 2012

Picture taken in the National Wild Life Park,  
In Southern Australia, so big
At the Cleland Conservatory, there.
Route (1A) to and from Adelaide
Is the come and go of the place.
I am glad that the Guide was curious,
The big clue was the logo on his cap.
Smokey's birthday party was a joy for all.
Andy asked Smokey for a piece of the cake,
Smokey said, " Hah, 'That will be the day.'
It's all gone,  Come next year for the bake"

Posted by your correspondents in the field,  
Robert and Donald McKenna….
Sometime poet Laureates


Andy was trying to chat up this guy
To have a nice word to say,
Alas he was more into having a snack
Than being the show-bear that day

It was time for his nap so we said our goodbyes
As he ate his leaf and twig candy.
He was just so sleepy and cuddly cute -
Oh I mean the bear and not Andy!

Colleen Fitzpatrick PhD
Forensic Genealogy Home Office
Understudy of Robert Edward McKenna and son Donald
Quiz Poets Laureate
Every day at Cleland you can get up close to and even hold a koala.

Koalas are one of Australia's most iconic species, ranking alongside the kangaroo and
emu as the most recognisable Australian animal across the world.

Hold a Koala

Cleland is one of few places in Australia where you can hold a koala.

To help you remember this very special and personal experience, you will be presented
with a professional photograph of your time holding the koala. If you would like to
The Koala Experience
Happy Birthday Smokey!

Date posted: 23 February 2012

Smokey the koala, one of Cleland’s oldest
residents, recently celebrated his 19th
birthday. The average life expectancy of a
koala in the wild is 10, and between 12 and
14 in captivity, so this was a very special
birthday for Smokey!

Our koala experience is one of the most
popular attractions at Cleland, and while
Smokey has now retired, there are many
other friendly residents who will be happy
to meet you.
share this with family and friends we can
provide addditional photos at a small
additional fee.

Daily sessions run between 2pm - 4pm.
An additional session is available on
Sundays and public holidays between
11am - 12pm.

Fees apply.

Koalas in close-up

Get up close to one of our koalas. Feel the
softness of its fur, admire its unique
features and take your own photos.

Koala close-ups are included as part of the
entry fee and held twice daily between
11am - 12pm and 2pm - 4pm.

In order to care for our koala's welfare,
neither of the koala experiences will occur
if temperatures are forecast to be over 32
degrees celsius at Mount Barker.

Private koala hold sessions are available
for an additional fee.
FYI:  Ron Fitzpatrick is no known
relation.  However, should he ever
proved to be, we will be honored to
accept him into our family.  - Q. Gen.
with no admission after 4.30 p.m. Admission prices range from A$14–$28.
Did you know that the Koala has fingerprints and is not a bear?
The Australian government currently lists the koala as a priority
species for conservation status assessment. Government estimates of
the national koala population numbers in the hundreds of thousands,
although other studies have estimated as few as 80,000 koalas left in
the wild. The Australian Koala Foundation in 2008 estimated there are
around 100,000 koalas left in the wild.

As with most native Australian animals, the koala cannot legally be
kept as a pet in Australia or anywhere else. The only people who are
permitted to keep koalas are wildlife carers and, occasionally,
research scientists. These individuals are issued with special permits
to care for koalas, but have to return them to the wild when they are
either well enough or, in the case of joeys, old enough.

The IUCN lists the species as "Least Concern".

In April 2012, it was announced that koalas in NSW, Queensland and
the ACT will be classified as vulnerable under a protected listing by
Federal Environment Minister of the Australian government Tony

The US government has declared the koala a threatened species.

The koala inhabits four Australian states. Under state legislation, the
species is listed as:

Queensland – Listed as "vulnerable".
New South Wales – Listed as "vulnerable".
Australian Capital Territory – Listed as "vulnerable".
South Australia – classified as rare (although the population on
Kangaroo Island is thriving).
Victoria – The koala population in Victoria was considered large and
thriving, according to an article which was last reviewed on 29
October 2007.

The koala was hunted almost to extinction in the early 20th century,
largely for its fur. Millions of furs were traded to Europe and the
United States, and the population has not fully recovered from such
decimations. Extensive cullings occurred in Queensland in 1915,
1917, and again in 1919 when over one million koalas were killed
with guns, poisons, and nooses. The public outcry over the cullings
was most likely the first wide-scale environmental issue that rallied
Australians. Despite the growing movement to protect native species,
the poverty brought about by the drought of 1926–28 led to another
600,000 koalas being killed during a one-month open season in
August 1927.

Today, habitat loss and the impacts of urbanisation (such as dog
attacks and traffic accidents) are the leading threats to the survival of
the koala. In recent years, some colonies have been hard hit by
disease, especially chlamydia. 2011 surveys in Queensland show that
chlamydia has caused symptoms in at least 50 percent of the koala
population. Chlamydia of koalas is not the same as the human form,
but can cause blindness, respiratory infections to all koalas and
infertility of female koalas. Moreover nearly all of the koalas in
Queensland are infected with koala retrovirus which suppresses the
koala's immune system and interferes with its ability to fight off
chlamydia. The koala requires large areas of healthy, connected forest
and will travel long distances along tree corridors in search of new
territory and mates. The increasing human population of the coastal
parts of the continent continues to cut these corridors through
agricultural and residential development, forestry, and road-building,
thereby marooning koala colonies in decreasing areas of bush. The
long-term viability of the koala is therefore threatened by genetic
weakness. The Australian Koala Foundation is the principal
organisation dedicated to the conservation of the koala and its habitat,
mapping 40,000 km2 (15,000 sq mi) of land for koala habitat and
claiming strong evidence that wild koala populations are in serious
decline throughout the species' natural range. Local councils in
growing urban areas with koala populations that have established or
are in the process of establishing planning overlays and controls to
preserve habitat for koalas include the Victorian councils of City of
Ballarat, Macedon Ranges Shire and Glenelg Hopkins Catchment
Management Authority as well as the Queensland councils of
Moreton Bay Regional Council and Redland Shire Council.

Although the species covers a large area, only portions of koala
habitat remain. Presently, many habitats are lost to weeds, clearance
for agriculture, or carved up by developers. Other threats come from
logging, poor management, attacks from feral and domestic animals,
diseases, and roads.
Present range of koala population.
were largely exterminated during the early part of the 20th century, but the state has
since been repopulated with Victorian stock. The koala is not found in Tasmania or
Western Australia.

The word koala comes from the Dharuk gula. Although the vowel /u/ was originally
written in the English orthography as "oo" (in spellings such as coola or koolah), it was
changed to "oa" possibly due to an error. The word is erroneously said to mean "doesn't

The scientific name of the koala's genus, Phascolarctos, is derived from Greek
phaskolos "pouch" and arktos "bear". Its species name,
cinereus, is Latin and means "ash-coloured".

Although the koala is not a bear, English-speaking
settlers from the late 18th century first called it koala
bear due to its similarity in appearance to bears.
Although taxonomically incorrect, the name koala bear
is still in use today outside Australia – its use is
discouraged because of the inaccuracy in the name.
Other descriptive English names based on "bear" have
included monkey bear, native bear, and tree-bear.

The koala is broadly similar in appearance to the
wombat (its closest living relative), but has a thicker
coat, much larger ears, and longer limbs. The koala has
large, sharp claws to assist with climbing tree trunks.
Weight varies from about 14 kg (31 lb) for a large
southern male, to about 5 kg (11 lb) for a small
northern female. The koala's five fingers include two
opposable thumbs, providing better gripping ability.
The first two fingers are positioned in apposition on the
front paws, and the first three fingers for the hind
paws. The koala is one of the few mammals (other
than primates) that have fingerprints. Koala fingerprints
are similar to human fingerprints; even with an electron
microscope, it can be quite difficult to distinguish
between the two.

The teeth of the koala are adapted to their herbivorous
diet, and are similar to those of other diprotodont
marsupials, such as kangaroos and wombats. They
have sharp incisors to clip leaves at the front of the
Male koala (top), Female
koala (bottom)
mouth, separated from the grinding cheek teeth by a wide diastema. The dental formula
for koalas is

The male koala, like many marsupials, has a bifurcated penis. The female has two
lateral vaginas and two separate uteri, which is common to all marsupials.

Koalas walk on all four legs when walking on the ground, joey clinging to the back
The brain in the ancestors of the modern koala once filled the whole cranial cavity, but
has become drastically reduced in the present species, a degeneration scientists suspect
is an adaptation to a diet low in energy. One of the smallest in marsupials with no more
than 0.2% of its body weight, about 40% of the cranial cavity is filled with
cerebrospinal fluid, while the brain's two cerebral hemispheres are like "a pair of
shrivelled walnut halves on top of the brain stem, in contact neither with each other nor
the bones of the skull. It is the only animal on Earth with such a strangely reduced

It is generally a silent, nocturnal animal, but males have a very loud advertising call that
can be heard from almost a kilometre away during the breeding season. Females glean
clues regarding a male's suitability as a mate from these calls, showing a preference for
larger males. When under stress, koalas may issue a loud cry, which has been reported
as similar to that of a human baby. There is
little reliable information about the lifespan of
the koala, but in captivity they have been
observed to reach the age of 18 years.
Koala Rug Rats