Page last updated at 10:28 GMT, Tuesday, 15 July 2008 11:28 UK

Koala bearing up after car ordeal

Gail Gipp from the Australian Wildlife Hospital and Lucky Grills koala
Lucky Grills' escape has been described as "miraculous"

A koala has survived being hit by a car and then dragged for several miles with its head stuck in the vehicle's front grill, officials in Australia say.

They say the male koala was found with his bottom sticking out of the grill of a woman's car near Brisbane.

The animal was taken to a wildlife hospital in Queensland where tests showed it was not badly hurt.

The lucky creature - believed to be several years old - was nicknamed Lucky Grills after his ordeal.

The driver said she had noticed a koala on the road but drove on when she failed to see anything in her rear view mirror.

The trapped animal was only spotted when the driver pulled up at a railway station on the outskirts of Brisbane.

"Somehow the force of the impact propelled him through the grill. That sort of wedged him there. That is why he didn't come adrift. The rest of his body was dangling," spokeswoman Carolyn Beaton of the Australian Wildlife Hospital told the AFP news agency.

She added that "an examination showed that he was in good health and had no serious injuries".

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