What happens when you blow kisses at a baby koala? If you’re lucky, you get tackle-hugged.
A cameraman in Symbio Wildlife Park in Australia found himself on the receiving end of the most adorable ambush in the universe when he spoke sweetly to a baby koala who’d just moved into some new digs. Little eleven-month-old Imogen is being transitioned into her own enclosure at the wildlife park after being hand-raised for the past three months. When she was only eight months old, another, much younger koala joey sadly lost his mom to leukemia. The tiny, orphaned joey was much too fragile to be without a koala parent, so zoo keepers switched him out with Imogen. She was removed from her mom’s pouch and raised by humans while the orphaned koala took her place. This move was the only way to ensure the survival of both koala babies.
Way to go, Imogen! She basically saved the other koala’s life by giving up a warm spot in her mother’s pouch. You can learn more about her unique upbringing here, but you’ll probably only be interested if you enjoy things like baby koalas being bottle-fed while hugging stuffed animal koalas. (If that doesn’t appeal to you, we need to talk. You might need a hug even more than Imogene.)
Imogene loves cuddles! That’s for sure. When introduced to her new home, the first thing she did was bound over to the nice cameraman and scale his leg. Who knew koalas could even move so fast?! We had no idea. Imogen shimmies right up to his face and gazes up at him like he’s the Ryan Gosling of the koala world.
Side note: Where can we apply for this man’s job? Seriously, where?
The whole encounter is all kinds of adorable. Imogen’s handlers are standing by, and they even warn the cameraman that it might hurt as the koala makes her move. He doesn’t seem to mind at all. We don’t blame him a bit.
Watch Imogen get her cuddle on in the video below. Because sometimes you just need a hug, you know?