Koala Conservation Centre - Wildlife in Their Natural Habitats
Phillip Island is about 140km south-southeast of Melbourne. The Koala Conservation Centre, situated in Cowes on Phillip Island, is part of the Phillip Island Nature Parks. It was established as a dedicated centre for koala research and conservation. The centre has over six hectares of bushland that houses native wildlife and plant species. There is also a small café and gift shop in the main building.
Address of the Koala Conservation Centre:
1810 Phillip Island Road, Phillip Island VIC 3923
The Koala Conservation Centre on Phillip Island is less than two hours' drive from the city of Melbourne
The tour of the conservation centre begins with lots of information and educational displays near the entrance to the walkways. The informative displays provide an insight into the lives of koalas and other native wildlife in Australia.
The conservation is not a zoo. The wildlife animals are not confined to certain areas. Visitors have to wander around to have a glimpse of wildlife at the conservation areas. The koalas are living in the wild and the bushland is their natural habitat. The koalas roam freely in this native bushland area and visitors will have to look for them in order to view these animals. Sometimes the koalas are easy to spot, although most of the time they are hiding amongst the trees. There are tall gum trees all around and koalas like to stay hidden amongst the gum leaves where they will spend their day eating and sleeping.
What to bring on a sunny day
Things you might need
A bottle of water
There are two elevated boardwalks that will bring visitors closer to see the koalas living in their natural habitat. The Tree Top Koala Boardwalk covers 800 metres of walking area, while the Woodland Tree Top Walk is about one kilometre. Visitors are advised not to touch the koalas and other wild animals. Most people are able to wander around on the boardwalks quietly, but occasionally there are screaming children and boisterous visitors in the area. Koalas are shy creatures and they will stay away from noisy places. From the boardwalks, views of the surrounding wetland areas are serene yet amazing.
Interesting koala fact
- A koala spends 20 hours a day sleeping, two hours feeding on eucalypt leaves and the remaining two hours on other minor activities like preening and moving around.
They have very low metabolic rate and they need to conserve a lot of energy in order to digest the eucalypt leaves.
Apart from the two boardwalks, there is the woodland trail where visitors can wander through the natural bush areas. They can explore the local bush at their own pace to enjoy the beauty of the native eucalypt woodland where other wildlife animals co-exist. The bushland is home to other native animals like the swamp wallabies, echidnas, nocturnal brushtail possums and ringtail possums. Snakes can be seen during their breeding season in the warmer months between October and March, so watch out for snakes slithering across the trail! There are hundreds of colourful native birds. Some of them are nesting in the hollows of the eucalyptus trees while others build their nests in the thick bushes.
More interesting koala facts
- Koala are wild animals. It is illegal to keep a koala as a pet.
- They might look like cuddly teddy bears but koalas are not bears. They belong to the family of marsupials which carry their young in the pouch.
- Koalas are solitary animals, they do not move around in groups.
- A male koala is called a buck, the female as known as a doe. Their baby is called a joey.
- The life span of a koala is about 10 years, although there are a number of koalas that live longer.
- Koala poo is very dry and comes in the form of a pellet. A koala produces up to 100 pellets or more every day.
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