Koala Skull BC-066
5 ½" L x 3" W x 4" H 14.6L x 8W x 9.8H (cm)
Koalas reportedly have one of the smallest brains relative to body size of all mammals. Their prune size brain halves don't even physically touch and still only occupy just 60% of the available space in their thick furry skull at that. Once numbering in the millions in their native Australia, there are now less than 10,000 of the fuzzy eared marsupials remaining in the wild. Because they must live their entire lives eating almost nothing but eucalyptus leaves, they have to eat large quantities to extract enough nourishment for sustenance. This high fiber, low protein diet necessitates they live life in the slow lane, so, in addition to smelling like a cough drop, they need to sleep 19-20 hours daily to conserve energy. Koalas have evolved a large nose and sensitive olfactory system to enable them to sniff out and choose only the most nutritious leaves. Their strong jaws and teeth are able to chew the tough leaves into a fine paste for efficient digestion. Evidence of their terrestrial origins remains as their pouch still opens downwards. That arrangement worked well, keeping dirt out while the ancestors were digging burrows but isn't optimal for keeping the baby koala in when living high in the treetops. 2-part skull (separate cranium & jaw).