According to the story: The drop bear is similar in appearance to the Koala however it is extremely fast (much unlike the Koala) and mysterious, razor sharp claws and the unusual tendancy to drop from high trees to attack people walking under the tree. The bear then goes about decapitating/maiming the victem then disappears into the night.
This story has been used many a time to convince neive tourists, who are already convinced everything in australia wants to kill them that even the crowded city isn't safe because every tree may potentially harbor a bear.
2. The only animal Steve Irwin could not catch on request.
Tourist: "Oh no, what are they??"
Aussie: "Nasty things drop bears, worse than the snakes, spiders, sharks and sea-life put together..."
Tourist: "I don't believe you"
Aussie: "You see this scar *points at nasty scar* - that was a drop bear"
Tourist is terrified - Aussie is laughing on the inside
Only known deterrant is a generous smearing of vegemite behind the ears. It saved me once and I'd do it again in a heartbeat!
The drop bear is characterised by it's unusual defense mechanism - when the male senses danger, the drop bear glides or 'drops' down from it's perch and uses it's powerful hind spur to barb the enemy's eyes.
see also hoop snake
A common remedy remedy to repel dropbears is to smear Vegemite over your face. The distinct smell drives the bear away. The Australian government has tried to hide the existence of the drop bear for the sake of Australia's tourism. Although drop bears are quite rare they inhabit small towns and there has been a number of drop bear related deaths.
In appearance, they are similar to koala's but have large canine teeth. There are different sub-species, but primary they look like normal koalas. When on ground they are capable of running at 60kmp/h. There are no captive dropbears, as they are too difficult to catch. Beware of the Dropbear.
"Oh no! That's so sad! Did they find his body?"
"Nothing but a corpse torn apart. You could barley tell it was him..."