Koala Park, Pennant Hills

Environmentalist Noel Burnet started Australia's first Koala Sanctuary in the 1930s. Situated in the North Western Sydney suburb of Pennant Hills, it's still educating visitors today.
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Koala Park Sanctuary on film

Koala Park Sanctuary in Sydney is where you can pat koalas, feed kangaroos and see Australian native birds and animals

"Christening of bears" at Koala Park, Pennant Hills September 1938, by Sam Hood.

"Christening of bears" at Koala Park, September by Sam Hood. Notes: Koala Park is a small zoo in the Sydney suburb of West Pennant Hills.From the collection of the State Library of New South Wales

Koala Park was created in the 1920's and officially opened in October of 1930 by the founder Noel Burnet. He became alarmed at the high numbers of koalas shot for the large export fur trade. He feared that if such harsh treatment was allowed to continue, this lovable and unique animal would disappear from the face of the earth forever. From that time on he spent his whole life fighting to protect, research and create a safe environment in which they could live and breed naturally.

Koala Park was created in the 1920's and officially opened in October of 1930 by the founder Noel Burnet. He became alarmed at the high numbers of koalas shot for the large export fur trade. He feared that if such harsh treatment was allowed to continue, this lovable and unique animal would disappear from the face of the earth forever. From that time on he spent his whole life fighting to protect, research and create a safe environment in which they could live and breed naturally.

Noel Burnet weighing a koala

Noel Burnet weighing a koala

Noel Burnet. Twenty-three koalas were born in the park in the first 5 years. Burnet became the first successful koala breeder, and the foremost contemporary expert on the subject.

Twenty-three koalas were born in the park in the first 5 years. Burnet became the first successful koala breeder, and the foremost contemporary expert on the subject.

Henry, the Duke of Gloucester at the Koala Park Sanctuary in West Pennant Hills, Sydney on November 27, 1934.

Henry, the Duke of Gloucester at the Koala Park Sanctuary in West Pennant Hills, Sydney on November

POSTER- KOALA PARK, PENNANT HILLS NSW (PHOTOGRAPHED BY CAZNEAUX) c1930

POSTER- KOALA PARK, PENNANT HILLS NSW (PHOTOGRAPHED BY CAZNEAUX) c1930

Original reason why koala sanctuaries were needed-  Bushmen and their dogs seated in front of a wall of animal skins (including koala pelts)

Original reason why koala sanctuaries were needed- Bushmen and their dogs seated in front of a wall of animal skins (including koala pelts)

This was the beginning of a unique family involvement with the koala that continues to this day. Noel Burnet's family (through his daughter Noela, now Noela McNamara) are still owner operators of the sanctuary following the same basic principles upon which it was founded.

This was the beginning of a unique family involvement with the koala that continues to this day. Noel Burnet's family (through his daughter Noela, now Noela McNamara) are still owner operators of the sanctuary following the same basic principles upon which it was founded.

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