Koala Swims For It, Gets Canoe Ride (Video)

Some members of the Burleigh Point Outrigger Canoe Club, paddling in Tallebudgera Creek on Australia’s Gold Coast last week, got a surprise passenger in their canoe. As you can see in this video, a koala caught sight of them from the bank, jumped in the water, swam to one of the canoes and took a seat.

Club member Peter Ando, who posted the video, described the experience as “altogether a stunning, magical encounter!” and truly it is. The koala’s interest in the humans in their boats is almost palpable; the look on his face as he sits on the seat of the canoe must be seen:

Ando noted that “Kanu Koala” was “Completely at ease? with us,” especially “considering there were 12 of us in a twin hull 45ft outrigger canoe, totally mind-blowing” while the koala was “completely wild.”

The BBC comments that “although it is not unknown for the marsupials to take to the water, experts believe the animal might have felt trapped on a tidal bank in Tallebudgera Creek and decided the canoe was its best way to escape.”

Ando and the other club members did paddle back to the beach where “Kanu Koala” had swam from and set him back ashore. ”With a rather casual wiggle he ambled back into the bushes,” writes Ando.

Maybe the koala just wanted a little companionship? Or to see what it’s like to ride on water in a canoe?


Related Care2 Coverage

5 Reasons Why We Need to Protect Koalas (Video)

Success! Some Koala Populations Now Officially Protected in Australia

Koalas Threatened by AIDS, STDs and Urbanization



Image from a screenshot of a video uploaded by peterando06 via YouTube

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Rhonda C.
Rhonda B.about a year ago

I live about 75kms from this spot and I would have reacted just like these people. I never thought a Koala could swim, let alone be clambering aboard a canoe with a quite a few humans on deck.....remarkable!!!! Loved this soooo much. Thank you:)))))

Jelena Radovanovic
Past Member 1 years ago

Amazing.Long live the koala!

Bryna Pizzo
Bryna Pizzo1 years ago

Thank you for the video! The koala is precious! :)

Tricia Hamilton
Tricia Hamilton3 years ago

Koala is Cute as a button!!

Tricia Hamilton
Tricia Hamilton3 years ago

What a cute animal!!!

Duane B.
.3 years ago


Phillipa W.
Phillipa W.3 years ago

thanks. that was awesome. I'm so glad they decided not to put him back in the water

Past Member
Heather T.3 years ago

What a wonderful story.
Having visited Australia quite a few times i have always loved Koalas especially in the wild.

Ceejay Robb
Ceejay Robinson3 years ago

This is my seat? Thanks! Okay, where are the snacks?

Rita M.
Ana M.3 years ago

Once I found a baby pidgeon (who could not fly) in a rock in a little lake. From the shore, my boyfriend could only reach the rock with his foot and the little pidgeon actually climbed to his shoe and sat while my boyfriend brought him back to land. He ran away then.
I am guessing the same happened to the koala, he saw the canoe as the only way to leave the bank.
Animals are very smart, no doubt :)