How Do Koalas Move?

Koalas move most ably and readily in their preferred environment, up in the branches of eucalyptus trees where they use their strong limbs and hooked claws to navigate, but they can also walk on the ground and can even swim if necessary. Koalas are much less capable while grounded and descend only to move from tree to tree to find new food.

Koalas spend most of their time not moving at all. They sleep for large parts of the day and tend to remain in a single tree for as long as they can. Multiple koalas may occupy the same tree in a social group for hours or days at a time.

When a koala is on the ground, it is vulnerable to its predators, among them dingoes and other wild canines that prowl the Outback. They are not proficient at defending themselves, though their claws and teeth are sharp and can, in dire circumstances, be used against predators.

Koalas are noted for the many postures they adopt while regulating their body temperature. They spread out when warm in order to disperse heat, position themselves to take advantage of wind and breezes, and tuck their limbs against their body when temperatures drop in order to stay warm.