Elsa the Koala melted hearts all over the world back in 2019 when she first made her debut into the world and is today In a tough start to life, Elsa was hand raised by Keeper Hayley after requiring keeper interference to ensure she was going to survive as Elsa’s mother Irene was unable to produce milk. Thankfully, both are happy and healthy koalas and Irene since went on to have Elsa’s little sister, Anna!
It did not take long for Elsa’s popularity to reach new heights with several videos of the fluffy koala going viral. Visitors travelled from far and wide to personally meet Elsa the koala themselves and have their photo taken with her. Elsa is beloved by anyone who meets her, and in her spare time loves sleeping, munching on fresh eucalyptus leaves, following keepers around the koala yard and doing everything she can to get extra cuddles and kisses.
To celebrate the important day, Elsa was showered with extra love in a ‘koala-party’ and given all of the cuddles she could ever want. After the occasion, Elsa was spotted fast asleep after all the excitement! These days, Elsa is a crucial part of the Australian Reptile Park’s koala breeding program with hopes she will birth her first joey this year.
Keeper Hayley Shute, Elsa’s adoptive mum and resident koala whisperer, said “It melts my heart to see Elsa thriving, considering the first time we met she was at risk of not making it. I look at her happy and healthy on her second birthday surrounded by everyone, enjoying all the attention and I get a bit emotional she’s growing up!”
Ms. Shute continued, “Elsa has spread so much joy to everyone all over the world but most importantly has raised awareness for koalas as a species in peril that needs our help now more than ever. Koalas are estimated to be extinct by 2050 and we need all of the help we can get protecting these amazing animals. We know Elsa has made an impact on people and we love sharing her story with the world.”
Elsa the koala currently resides in one of the many koala yards at the Australian Reptile Park and is frequently spotted by visitors front and centre either enjoying a deep sleep or eating some fresh leaves for lunch. This is the first year Elsa will a contributor to the crucial koala breeding program, with keepers anticipating many joeys being born into the program this year between Elsa and the other 35 koalas that reside at the Australian Reptile Park.