I love this photograph for a few reasons. I love the light. The sun is getting ready to set in the West and its warm glow almost reflects off the worn bark of the Coolibah Tree. I have a soft spot for the iconic Aussie Marsupial for sure, they are depleting in numbers and so to have a happy content native Koala visit, is a special treat. But most of all I like the story that goes with The Visitor….
Mating season for Koalas is typically September to March. The first Spring we moved into our house, as Newly-weds, we received a visitor in the tree in the front yard. The ONLY tree or living thing in the yard and in fact TWO visitors. They arrived during the night and one, the male, was VERY loud. Being a little urbanised still, I didn’t recognise the territorial mating call outside my window and woke DH. He groggily told me it was just ‘the washing machine’ and to ‘go back to sleep’. I was resigned to discussing it further in the morning, when he was actually awake!
The Koalas stayed a few days before moving on but I was tickled pink to have them. The next year, in September the male koala returned. “WOW!” I thought, this is an event I can look forward to each year. Over the years the Koalas have always come. I’ve never been disappointed. But, for me at least, it has become more of a connection than one would usually associate. Perhaps I’m over-thinking it but it brings me a warm energy so I accept it anyway.
The koalas first visited when we arrived in the ‘neighbourhood’. About 2 weeks before we have been due to welcome each of our children into the world, they have returned. My two eldest were each born mid September so I thought this was simply coincidence, but pleased to have not missed the visitors while we were away.
My next daughter was born in August and still The Visitor came. A little early, but maybe the weather was uncharacteristically warm that year and so they were on the move already. But when a visit came prior to July last year before DS was born, I was convinced he was here to wish us well again, checking up on us. The local koala population, albeit small, holds a special place in our hearts. They are like a symbol of contentment and security. They are part of our home.
I don’t think last year’s visitor is the same as the first, but I do wonder if they belong to the same family. An offspring or sibling perhaps? One year the koala in the front tree had obvious signs of conjunctivitis which is prevalent and detrimental to Koala populations and often contracted from the Mother at birth. The following year The Visitor was smaller, much younger. Last year I think the same koala returned but again, I can’t be sure. He relocated to the healthier tree in the back yard which is much more accommodating and perhaps jucier come meal time.
It was such a delight to glance out the window and see in the lowest fork of the tree, this Koala having a snooze. We don’t bother him and he is not bothered by us. He posed for a photograph or two and then climbed higher up the trunk to get a better view of the setting sun.
Thanks for the friendship buddy, see you and your family again soon.