Koala’s ‘Beautiful’ Gesture To Fallen Friend Causes Rescuers’ Hearts To Break

The other day, animal caretakers from KOALA RESCUE Inc. in Australia were called to a property where a concerned citizen had reported seeing a koala lying motionless at the base of a tree.

Sadly, when they arrived, they found that the koala in question had already passed away — but in her final moments, she was not alone.

Embracing her body was a second koala, presumed to be her companion.


“The reality of the situation emerged, indicating that the female had in fact already died, and the adult male was actually comforting her,” Hartley Head of KOALA RESCUE Inc. told The Dodo. “Viewing the compassionate behavior of the male koala was both distressing and overwhelming, especially as the rescuers became aware of the emotions that the male koala must have been experiencing.”

It was a heartbreaking scene, but one that “really does represent the truly beautiful nature that koalas are capable of demonstrating,” rescuers wrote.

Here’s that moment on video:

The koala’s cause of death remains unknown, said Head, but it’s possible she died as the result of a fall. Her companion, after an assessment, was found to be healthy.

Following his release, the surviving koala climbed a nearby tree to watch the rescuers carry out their work.

KOALA RESCUE Inc. says that such scenes of mourning are rare to witness, but in so doing, they offer a glimpse at an emotional depth in animals that all too often goes unconsidered.