Why Koala Has A Stumpy Tail
This is one of the best Australian Dreamtime stories for kids. Long ago, Koala and Tree Kangaroo were good friends. Back then, Koala had a long, furry tail.
One year, there was no rain. All the streams dried up, water could not be found anywhere. “Even the leaves on the trees were dying,” Koala said to Tree Kangaroo. “We will die too if it does not rain soon.” To this, the Tree Kangaroo said, “I have an idea. When I was little, there was a very dry season. To find water, my mother dug a hole in a dry stream bed. She dug for hours and hours. At last, water began to fill the bottom of the hole. There wasn’t a lot of water but there was enough for both of us to have a good drink.” Also, read How The Kangaroo Got Its Pouch.
Koala cried, “Let’s try that! I can’t wait to taste the cold water.” Koala and Tree Kangaroo went to the stream bed. It was as dry as the desert. Koala wind, “I’m tired and thirsty. You start digging while I rest in this tree. As soon as I get my strength back, I’ll dig while you rest.”
Tree Kangaroo agreed and began to dig. It was hard work but the thought of cool water kept him going. When Tree Kangaroo took a break and looked up, Koala was sound asleep. Tree Kangaroo thought, “When Koala wakes up, he will be well rested. Then, he can take his turn.” So, Tree Kangaroo kept on digging.
When Koala woke up, Tree Kangaroo called out, “Now, it’s your turn. You must do your part!” Koala began to climb down from the tree but then he cried, “Ouch! I just got thorn in my foot. You keep digging while I get it out.” So, the Tree Kangaroo kept on digging. The hole got deeper and deeper but still there was no water. You may also like to read, How The Kangaroos Got Their Tails.
“Koala, I’m worn out! I need a break,” yelled Tree Kangaroo. Again, Koala began to climb down but this time he called out, “I’m dizzy from lack of water. I must rest a little longer.” Tree kangaroo was getting mad but he kept on digging. At last, some water appeared. “Koala, it worked,” he shouted, “Water is filling the hole. Soon, there will be enough water for both of us.”
When Koala heard this, he jumped and rushed to the hole. He pushed Tree Kangaroo out of his way. Koala stuck his head into the water and began to gulp it down. Tree Kangaroo was furious and called out, “Save some for me!” But Koala kept on drinking and drinking and drinking.
Tree Kangaroo grabbed Koala’s tail to pull him out of the hole. He yanked and yanked. At last, Koala’s tail broke off. To this day, Koala’s tail is short and stumpy. And because Koala was lazy and selfish, he also lost a good friend. Also, read Why Bats Fly At Night.
Here is a short visual depiction of one of the Australian dreamtime stories “Why Koala Has A Stumpy Tail“. See the video story below,