Six-month old koala joey, Phantom, has been winning hearts since arriving at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital last week. The tiny 420 gram joey was in his mum Lizzy's pouch when they were hit by a car on the Warrego Highway at Coominya, west of Brisbane, and brought together to the hospital for treatment.
Lizzy suffered chest trauma and a collapsed lung, but after emergency treatment, is doing extremely well in rehabilitation and the vets at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital are very happy with her progress. Miraculously, little Phantom was untouched by the accident. The affectionate little joey clung to his mum for comfort during her procedure, and has been demonstrating his cheeky and playful personality ever since!
Following the successful operation, the pair have been relocated from the ICU to the outside koala wards at the wildlife hospital where they can spend time together as mum and bub - with little Phantom in the full swing of his development. He's enjoying lots of cuddles from mum, and taking time to explore his leafy rehabilitation environment.
The Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital vets are monitoring Phantom and Lizzy's progress closely, and are hopeful that they will be released back to the wild soon.
Phantom and Lizzy's story is a reminder for everyone to be on the lookout for wildlife while driving on the roads. The Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital sees a great number of koalas who are victims of car accidents, and with the average cost to treat a koala ranging from $1500 - $5000, public support for the hospital's work is crucial. The facility receives no ongoing government funding, and relies on donations from the public to help save koalas just like Phantom and Lizzy.