A koala which was found screwed to a post at a Queensland lookout point died before the ‘disturbing act’, according to an autopsy.
The results show the koala was hit by a car and was probably dead before it was attached to a gazebo at the Brooloo Park Lookout, the Gympie Times reported.
RSPCA investigator Michael Beatty said there was no blood flow from where the koala was attached.
He said the koala suffered trauma to its head and liver, and frayed claws from being dragged along the road.
Evidence also suggests the koala was left in the bush for days before being retrieved and displayed.
Mr Beatty slammed the actions of however screwed the koala to the post, saying ‘really disturbing acts’ were common in summer.
‘For some reason the summer holidays seem to spark real acts of animal cruelty.’
He said the RSPCA was continuing to investigate the incident.
Dave Phillips saw the koala screwed to the post at the lookout on his way to work about 7.45am on Wednesday.
He thought he was rescuing an injured animal but was ‘horrified’ to find it was dead.
‘I tried to stay as far away as I could,’ he said, as he thought the animal was asleep.
He could see blood on the post and knew the koala had been hurt.
‘Its ear looked like it was mangled, and it looked like it had been dragged by a car.’
He waved down someone from the road as he did not have a mobile phone, and was hoping a wildlife rescue group could save the animal’s life.