Re male koala grunting at night

To: Philip Veerman <>, David Dickson <>, birding-aus NEW <>
Subject: Re male koala grunting at night
From: Janine Duffy <>
Date: Tue, 3 Oct 2017 05:50:38 +0000
Yes, male koalas are far more likely to vocalise at night, at dusk and
dawn.  Breeding season begins around start of October, but we have
recorded males vocalising from late August.  Calling is associated
with breeding.  They will continue to call until March.

At the height of the breeding season - November, December near
Melbourne - calls become quite frequent in the early hours of the
night. We monitor a population in the You Yangs, and calls can be
heard every five or ten minutes some warm nights in December, but they
seem to be answering other males - it may be less frequent where there
are fewer koalas.

David, it might be hard to find your grunting koala the next morning -
often they move overnight, and koalas can move surprising distances
(500m to 1km overnight). Your best chance would be to get out a
spotlight and go straight out when you can still hear him.

At a distance, it might be hard to pick an ibis call from a koala,
especially if its early evening and a big flock.  At close range
though a very deep repetitive call is a koala.  Did you know that
koalas have a special organ in their throat to make their call far
deeper than their body size could otherwise produce?

PS how lucky you are to have a Painted Honeyeater nearby!

On 3 October 2017 2:15:55 pm "Philip Veerman" <> wrote:

> Surely it would be normal for male koalas to be grunting at night. I know it
> to occur but I don't know how regularly. I did a quick look at some books
> that don't specifically comment on when they call. They are night active. It
> is hard to imagine that Straw-necked Ibis would produce a comparable volume
> and range of sounds that a koala does.
> Philip
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Birding-Aus  On Behalf Of
> David Dickson
> Sent: Tuesday, 3 October, 2017 1:00 PM
> To: 
> Subject: [Birding-Aus] Re male koala grunting at night
> Hi All,
> re Sue Dawson's email on a 'male koala grunting at night'. Last year I was
> pleased that a koala had moved into to the Rise and Shine bush reserve next
> to my place in central Victoria. He grunted at night in the forest but I was
> never able to sight him. Same again this year. There are however dozens of
> Straw-necked Ibis that roost in the forest at this time of the year and
> their deep grunting is pretty similar to a koala's. Has anyone else
> experienced this?
> regards
> David
> PS My first Painted Honeyeater at Rise and Shine calling and sighted over
> the past couple of days
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