A Koala’s Nose is More Important Than You Think

Just as zebras have unique stripe patterns, koalas have distinctive pigmentation around their nostrils, which enable us to recognize individual koalas. Every koala nose is unique which is why they use it to form friendships and avoid enemies.

When they’re not sleeping, koalas mostly eat or move between trees. They use their noses to understand what food is toxic and what food is okay to eat. They always smell their food before eating it.

Koalas use urine to mark the territory and release chemicals that tell other koalas more about them. The urine trail reveals information such as the “koala’s sex, identity, dominance, relatedness to other koalas, readiness to mate, disease status and even what they’ve been eating,” Popular Science writes.