Mouth-to-mouth revives striken koala

03:56, Aug 22 2014

An injured koala has received the kiss of life from Australian wildlife volunteers.

The marsupial initially survived being hit by a car in the Melbourne suburb of Langwarrin last night and managed to climb up a large tree, where it became stuck.

Firefighters and a Wildlife Victoria officer spent half an hour freeing the prone animal from a high branch, before it tumbled out of the tree and into a blanket held by its rescuers below.

A Wildlife Victoria officer then revived the animal - whom they named "Sir Chompsalot" - using mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. 

The accident happened around 5.40pm. Wildlife Victoria received reports from a passerby that an ailing animal was lying beside the road. 

Wildlife Victoria spokeswoman Amy Amato said it was not unusual for the koala to flee a tall tree after sustaining life-threatening injuries. 

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"This is generally what most animals will do. It's their instinct. When animals are injured, they can mask their injuries well and flee from their predators. The koala saw us as its predator," she said. 

Sir Chompsalot is now recovering at the wildlife shelter, which is also the private home of the Wildlife Victoria officer who brought it back to life. 

Langwarrin CFA captain Sean Curtin said the event was a little "out of the box" for the firefighters but was glad to hear the koala was "alive and well and eating. It's fantastic".

Sir Chompsalot update for @3aw693 and @rossandjohn ... Sir packaged for transport to Animal Hospital pic.twitter.com/VQApgFme8e

The Age