About Us

Our History

The Koala Hospital commenced in 1973, in Port Macquarie a regional town in Australia. While the plight of the koala had not been a happy one, even back then, an extremely far sighted couple, Jean and Max Starr, local shop keepers, setup the Koala Preservation Society a not-for-profit association to run the Koala Hospital.

2013
Over the hospital’s 40 year history, we have featured in many documentaries and wildlife programs throughout the world; consequently the Koala Hospital has gone from its small humble beginnings to an organisation that is internationally known and respected.
The First National Koala Conference that we presented in May this year was an outstanding success with speakers from around Australia and Overseas. We look forward to presenting the second conference in 2016.

2012
Following the passing of our founder Jean Starr in October, a special walk at the Koala Hospital was dedicated to Jean by her husband Max and the Port Macquarie Hastings Mayor.

2005 
Major construction took place that provided the main building that houses the treatment room, day room and extended the Intensive Care Units from 6 to 8. An office and Souvenir Kiosk was also part of the construction.
The Koala Hospital is open every day of the year and visitors are welcome at all times during the day. A “Walk and Talk” tour is conducted every afternoon at 3:00pm.

1990 
Saw the third stage of development with the construction of the John Williamson Wing housing 6 ICU’s. John a nationally known Australian Country Music Singer happened to be in Port Macquarie and during a visit to the Koala Hospital, an emergency rescue call came in. The entire experience was so impressive for John that it inspired him to write the song, “Good Bye Blinky Bill” which became enormously popular throughout Australia. John very generously donated the proceeds from the song to the Society.

1986
A substantial hospital building replaced the original ‘log cabin’

1975 
The Port Macquarie Apex Club built the first little Koala Hospital with two recovery yards adjacent to Historic Roto House. It became apparent that the Society needed some sort of place where the koalas could rehabilitate. The trees around Roto House and the Hospital even to this day, are home for many koalas.