Epic footage shows how ‘cute and cuddly’ koalas turn into fluffy demons when they produce their iconic – and terrifying – mating call.
The clip, shared on Reddit, shows a koala in full cry, with the ear-piercing sound – which is described as being both pig and chainsaw-like – intimidating to say the least.
Numerous social media users were quick to point out the male mating call of the marsupial is even more aggressive, and that the noise was a ‘guaranteed way to scare children’.
Koalas are native to Australia, and are typically found in coastal areas of the mainland’s eastern and southern regions, notably Queensland, NSW, Victoria and South Australia.
They can weigh up to 15kg and feast on a eucalypt diet, which sees some sleep for up to 20 hours a day.
Koalas may appear to be cute and cuddly, but they are capable of making some very intimidating noises (pictured)
The iconic Australian marsupials feast on a eucalypt diet, and can sleep for up to 20 hours a day
In a grim forecast, scientists last month warned koalas could soon become extinct, with just 30,000 left in the wild.
New figures from the Australian Koala Foundation – who have been monitoring numbers for about a decade – reveal populations have plunged by 30 per cent in just three years.
The most recent population estimate is that the country is home to between 32,000 and 58,000 koalas, down from between 46,000 and 82,000 in 2018.
That is just a fraction of the eight million koalas in Australia when European settlement began in 1788.
Flinders University’s Professor of ecology Corey Bradshaw said the situation for the species is dire.
‘When they go extinct is up for debate, but whether they will go extinct is not really up for debate anymore,’ he said.
‘Habitats have been cleared… fragmented by roads and development. [There’s] genetic problems and diseases… dogs and cars. Add bushfires, and there’s not a lot of long term hope for that species in particular.’
Currently the animals are listed as ‘vulnerable’ under the Australian Government’s Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act in Queensland and NSW.