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Koala Life Cycle: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Mary Grace Miller

Mary Grace has taught first grade for 8 years and has a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and is licensed in ESL.

A life cycle refers to a living thing's birth, reproduction, and death. All living things have a life cycle. This lesson will teach you all about the life cycle of a koala!

What Are Koalas?

You might think koalas are bears, but they are actually a special type of animal called a marsupial. Marsupials are animals that carry their babies in the mother's pouch. Another marsupial you might be familiar with is a kangaroo.

Koalas are marsupials.
koala

Let's learn more about koalas and their life cycle!

Koala Birth

We already know that baby koalas get to ride around in their mom's pouches! That's pretty cool, but did you also know that baby koalas are called joeys? Such a silly name!

Baby joeys are the size of a jellybean when they are born. They are light pink with closed eyes and no ears. After four to five months, they are able to open their eyes.

Mother koalas only give birth to one joey each year. The babies live in their mother's pouch for six to seven months (about half a year). During this time, they only drink milk.

When koalas come out of their mother's pouch, they ride on her back until they are ready to live on their own! During this time, they like to explore and go on adventures, and they grow much more quickly because they are not in the pouch anymore.

After they are one year old, they are able to eat eucalyptus, a special plant that adult koalas eat. This is also when koalas usually leave their mothers and live completely on their own. Female koalas can begin to have joeys of their own when they are between three and four years old.

Koala Adult Life

Adult koalas can grow to be about two to three feet long. That's way bigger than the jellybean size they were when they were born! Koalas live in eastern Australia in forests, and mostly forests full of eucalyptus, since that is what they eat.

Koalas live in eucalyptus forests in Australia.
koala

Having eucalyptus plants everywhere makes it easy for them to find food! They also eat a little bit of dirt sometimes - did you know that this actually makes their stomachs feel better so they can eat more leaves?

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