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Koala Population by Country 2024

Beloved around the world for their cuddly appearance and docile demeanor, koalas are an iconic marsupial species strongly associated with Australia. In fact, wild koalas are only found in Australia, and even then, only in a few specific regions. Koala populations outside of Australia are limited to zoos and are part of dedicated ongoing conservation efforts.

Here’s a closer look at the distribution of koala populations worldwide, as well as a brief overview of factors that can contribute to koala populations within a specific region.


The current koala population of Australia is not explicitly known, although there are estimates. The Australian government claims there are over 400,000 wild koalas in Australia. However, the Australian Koala Foundation has expressed concerns that actual numbers could fall between 33,000 and 60,000. Current population estimates by region as of 2023 are as follows:

Queensland: 35,000-100,000

New South Wales: 20,000-75,000

Victoria: 75,000-325,000

South Australia: 19,000-52,000

Naturally, koala-focused conservation efforts in Australia are extensive and include efforts to protect natural habitats and keep disease within the populations in check. There are also numerous legal policies and laws designed to help protect koalas, including the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act of 1999.

United States

In the United States, koala populations only occur in ten accredited zoos nationwide, with most located in states known for their warm climates, such as Florida or California. Examples include the Palm Beach Zoo, the Los Angeles Zoo, and the San Diego Zoo.

Koalas in captivity, including in the United States, face different challenges than they might in their natural habitat. This presents potential issues related to breeding, survival rate, etc.


Koalas are extremely well-loved in Japan, making koala-focused attractions and parks very popular. Japan also has a long-standing diplomatic relationship with Australia that revolves around koalas.

As with koalas in captivity in the United States, captive koalas in Japan face unique challenges. For example, the climate in Japan is very different from that in the koala’s native Australia. Maintaining a healthy dietary approach can also be an issue.

Factors Affecting Koala Populations

Habitat loss and disease are perhaps the most formidable challenges koalas in the wild face today. Factors like deforestation, urbanization, and similar examples threaten important sources of both shelter and food. Climate change is also a large contributing factor to habitat-related problems.

Additional factors affecting koala populations in 2023 include predation, bush fires, invasive species, and a persistent lack of genetic diversity.

Koalas occur naturally only in Australia.

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Koala Population 2021
Koala Population 2018