Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The tale of the Drop Bear

It is well understood that the Dropbear has evolved over thousands of years. It's diminutive cousin the Koala was more often found in dryer areas of Australia where it's herbivorous lifestyle was a natural adaptation to scarce food supplies. Conversely, Dropbear prides were more common in sub-tropical forests, where larger mammals (a primary food source) were more prevalent. The population density along coastal areas accounts for the less than comfortable relationship shared over the years by humans and Dropbears. Due to habitat destruction, many Dropbear prides have divided over the years, some of which head further inland in search of more plentiful food sources, and safer environments in which to raise cubs. This in turn has displaced some koala populations. This in fact serves to provide the Australian government with a convenient cover story. They (and others) claim that coastal Koala habitats are being destroyed, thereby lowering the count of koala's typically seen around urban Australia. This is a fallacy, as koala's never inhabited coastal areas in any great numbers due to the Dropbear not being particularly concerned with matters of etiquette regarding the feeding on relatives. However, since many tourists tend to be disappointed that they do not see a koala in every eucalyptus tree, the government perpetuates this story of an endangered species in a shrinking habitat. As horrible as it is, it sounds a lot better than saying "Oh, those cuddly things? Yeah, the Dropbears ate them all".



Sarah said...

Learn something new everyday! I'd never heard of Dropbears.

Are bunyips for real?

Pearl said...

Oh, good god, Tempo!! :-) That photo really caught me unaware!!

So what about the jackalopes? You guys got those, too?


Windsmoke. said...

Are you fair dinkum?. Meat eating Koala's i'm a bit skeptical??? :-).

Tempo said...

Hi Sarah, dont believe everything you read.
G'day Pearl, Sorry about that, but I didnt fake the photo... someone else did.
Ah Windsmoke, you're not buying it eh?
The drop Bear is a time honored Aussie tale that goes way back. I first heard the stories when I was a small kid, these days there are several web sites and many, many stories. We use these fables to scare tourists and get pretty girls to share our tents (so we can 'protect' them...)

Sarah said...

Ah no. My naivete & gullibility shows again!

Tempo said...

Dont feel bad Sarah, after reading Pearls comment I had to Google Jackalope..Geez, hate to run into one of these.

Mags118 said...

Hi Tempo,
Oh yes I know the dropbear, my grandfather used to tell me all about them, and how they would drop down from the tree tops onto kids especially, if you are alone in the bush.

My grandparents had an acreage with a lot of bush around, and their tales worked, I never went into the bush alone. LOL.

Tempo said...

Hi Mags, yeah when I was a kid the Dropbear was a tool used to keep us out of stuff we weren't supposed to be into. These days it's a marketing tool to sell stuff no one wants.
Dont it make you wonder what they had out there they didnt want you to see? A Whiskey still, hummocks and beer?