Koalas lounge around in the trees, sleeping. They don't move for hours. They're cute and cuddly, but slow and dopey and quiet.
Except when they're not.
After midnight, they wake up. They grunt at each other, loudly, in this extraordinary bray like a donkey with a bass voice. They thrash through the gum trees in search of a mate. The din is tremendous. You'd hardly think it was the same sleepy creatures responsible.
When I was young, there were very few koalas around the area. Many people never saw one; I felt privileged to have seen two in my life.
Now, if I want, I could see one every day. I certainly hear them every day. I have looked up, wondering if one was around, and seen one right in front of my eyes. You can sometimes hear them call during the day, and see them raising their snouts as they do. They have passed me on the path at night, not seeming to even see me in the dim light. There's more and more of them all the time. They're not native to the area, so I wonder where the population explosion will lead.
They certainly keep the nights interesting.