Orphaned koala survives and thrives with help of zookeepers

A koala joey orphan named Omeo is doing just fine thanks to the wildlife specialists at the San Diego Zoo.

In December 2019, the five-month-old koala was brought to the zoo after his mother died of cancer. Later, in March, the San Diego Zoo posted an adorable video to their Instagram, writing, “While he still has a long way to go, we’re hoping that what started as a sad story will be a happy ending.”

On March 20, just a few weeks later, the zoo shared a happy update about little Omeo (whose name means “mountains” in aboriginal Australian).

“Omeo lives in a faux pouch inside an incubator with the temperature and humidity set to simulate his mother’s pouch,” the video update revealed. “His caregivers encourage him to exercise and explore with a toy koala and mini eucalyptus tree.”

At the end of the video, the zoo shared that “Omeo’s future looks bright.” In yet another Instagram post posted on March 22, they even noted that “he’s grown stronger, his endurance has increased, and he has healthy fur.”

“He is starting to sample eucalyptus, so we hope he will be eating it soon; and the next big step is meeting other koalas, and learning how to socialize and climb—doing all the great things koalas do,” Kim Weibel, San Diego Zoo’s senior neonatal assisted care specialist, told Patch.

Soon enough, Omeo is expected to be eating, sleeping and exploring just like any other cute koala would!

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