furry, gray koala lives high in the tops of eucalyptus
trees. Now a protected species, it is still threatened
by the loss of habitat due to seasonal brush fires. While
it looks like a small bear, the koala is actually a marsupial
whose hands and feet are specially adapted for climbing
trees. When it descends to the ground, it shuffles along
awkwardly on its short, stocky legs.
Logging, agriculture and urban development have not only
reduced the area available to Koalas, but added other
dangers. The koala's habitat has been criss-crossed by
roads, resulting in many road kills and attacks by neighboring
pet dogs are frequent. Disease, too, has taken its toll
on the koala.