The Australian Reptile Park are thrilled to announce that Elsa the koala, the world’s most famous koala, has had her first joey emerge from the pouch! The fluffy bundle of joy is the first to emerge from the pouch for this year’s koala breeding season at the Australian Reptile Park. This adorable news being much needed with Greater Sydney currently experiencing a flood disaster. Luckily, the flooding event has not affected Elsa, her joey and the other animals at the Australian Reptile Park.

Elsa the koala melted hearts all over the world back in 2019 when she first made her debut into the world. 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 with her videos being seen over 15 million times.

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 and now with her joey emerging from the pouch and I get a bit emotional that 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. Visitors will now be able to see Elsa and her joey cuddling. Visitors have travelled from far and wide to personally meet Elsa the koala themselves and have their photo taken with her.

Proud of being an active supporter of wildlife conservation, The Australian Reptile Park continues to breed their koalas in an effort to help boost population numbers for the endangered species and educate Australians about koalas. The wildlife sanctuary located on the Central Coast of New South Wales also hopes this heightened awareness helps protect the species from extinction.