In early September 2019, a homeowner found a young male koala in the backyard with her dogs and was concerned the koala may have been attacked. Our rescue team was dispatched, and the young koala was captured. On examination at the Koala Hospital, staff were pleased to find he only had a laceration on one foot. They also found he had amazing, beautiful blue eyes. This is a rare genetic phenomenon in koalas who occasionally do get admitted to the hospital having one blue eye and one brown eye but not both.
The Koala Hospital has been working with the Lions Club of Port Macquarie-Tacking Point in putting together the Koala Smart program for schools throughout the Hastings and Macleay Valleys. The Koala Smart program is about getting students to come up with ways to reverse the decline in koalas on the mid north coast and then to implement these projects into the real world with the support of the Koala Hospital and Lions. The results so far have been amazing. The Koala Smart program is so important that our blue-eyed Koala, Lion Leo as he has been called, has become the Ambassador for the Koala Smart program.
Lion Leo is now back in his home range and who knows, in the future, we may have more blue-eyed koalas from Leo’soffspring.