Koala Milk Replacer – Early Lactation

Milk substitute for koala joeys less than 160 days old.

Joeys at this stage are furless, or with fine fur first appearing from around 90 days of age. Eyes are closed or just beginning to open from around 150 days of age. Completely confined to the pouch, but may poke head out occasionally.

Key Features

  • Specifically formulated to match the composition of early lactation koala milk.
  • Moderate energy milk, with a balance of carbohydrate & fat content.
  • Protein high in sulphur-containing amino acids (cysteine & methionine) for the onset of hair growth.


Whole milk solids (low lactose), whey protein, casein, glucose, vegetable oils, omega-3 & 6 fatty acids, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, B12, C, D3, E, K, biotin, choline, inositol, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, magnesium, zinc, iron, manganese, copper, iodine, selenium.

 Typical Analysis

 Protein 22%
 Fat 35%
 Ash 4%
 Moisture 3%
Energy (ME) 23 MJ/kg

Pack Sizes

180g & 900g.

Use Koala Milk Replacer Early Lactation for young "pinkies" or "velvets" that are completely pouch-bound and dependent on milk. Joeys at this age are very immature and may not be viable. They should only be attempted by experienced carers with the correct equipment and resources.

 Impact Colostrum Supplement may be fed to enhance the immune system.

Making up Milk

To make 100mL of milk: Mix 22g of powder (3 scoops) with 85ml of warm water.

To make 800mL of milk: Mix 180g of powder with 700ml of warm water.

Add about half of the water to the powder first and mix to a paste. Then make up with remaining water and mix thoroughly. Water is preboiled to ensure that it is sterilised. If the water is too hot it can cause the milk to curdle. If it is too cold then it will be difficult to disperse the powder. An electric whisk can be used for mixing larger quantities. Milk can be stored in the fridge for a day or can be frozen for up to 2 weeks. It may be useful to store frozen milk in small portions (e.g. ice cube trays), so that the required daily feed volumes can be easily thawed out. Once thawed out, discard any unused milk, and wash feeding utensils thoroughly.

Feeding Guide

Warm milk to about 30°C and feed using a bottle and teat. An LD Teat or syringe is recommended for small in-pouch koalas. Feed around 6-8 times a day for furless joeys, reducing this to 4 times a day by the time they are fully-furred. If the joey is showing signs of dehydration (e.g. during hot weather), give extra drinks of water between feeds. Young joeys dehydrate rapidly if not maintained under optimum husbandry conditions. Consult your veterinarian or experienced carer for further information about husbandry and feeding of koala joeys.


Regional differences present considerable variation in koala growth rate. Refer to the Koala Growth Chart for typical growth rates of smaller northern animals compared to larger southern animals. Weigh joeys regularly to verify weight gains and determine the volume of milk to feed. Overfeeding milk can cause diarrhoea so feed the suggested volumes in our tables.

Transition from Early to Late Lactation

Milk transition refers to when a joey is changed from one Wombaroo milk stage to the next. It is important to transition joeys at the correct age to ensure they are getting the proper nutrition for their stage of development. Gradually transition milk at 160 days of age by mixing decreasing amounts of Early Lactation with increasing amounts of Late Lactation formula over 15-20 days. This transition occurs once the eyes are open, the upper incisors start erupting and fine fur appears on the head. Head length is approximately 54-58mm and body weight may be anywhere from 225-350g at this age, depending on geographical location or sex of the joey. This is outlined in the koala growth charts. Note that at about 180-210 days of age young koalas should ideally be provided with 'pap' from an adult animal to assist the transition onto eucalypt leaves.