Tag Archives: Kangaroo

Aussie Animals Down Under: Up, Close and Personal

31 Oct

DSC_0255   Feeding encounters with Aussie animals in the zoo? Yep, those are quite common. But I must say that I haven’t experienced (or for my case, witnessed :P) a more ‘personal’ encounter with the wildlife here than what me and my sister were blessed to have one cool, sunny day at Phillip Island Wildlife Park. What do I mean by ‘personal’? Maybe the following pictures will help explain 🙂 DSC_0295 DSC_0281 Yep, that’s right, the wallaby and the grey kangaroo in the photos did not just feed off my sister’s hand, but they were actually holding her hand with their own paws while munching on their treats 😉 They must have been afraid that my sister will run off with their snack! =D It was not an easy encounter to have, as it actually takes a bit of time before these animals warm up to you and let you bond with them up close (yes, it was vital to follow the advise of the zookeeper to feed them AT KNEE LEVEL. Anne learned that the hard way :P) But once they do, boy, they can turn out to be a greedy and aggressive lot LOL DSC_0278 DSC_0252 And sadly for the feathery folks in the zoo, people tend to focus on feeding the furry kind.. Hence, the photo above of the huge bird trying to nick some of the snacks Anne was trying to feed the kangaroo 😛   Another memorable moment for us was when we heard someone suddenly exclaimed that there was a joey hanging on to its mother kangaroo! DSC_0272   We quickly looked around and lo and behold, we saw a tiny head sticking out of its mum’s belly 🙂 I was really quite pleased with our visit to this park. After all, Phillip Island Wildlife Park does not give a very good impression when just passing by or looking at the park from the outside. Contrary to the photos in this post, from the outside, everything just looks brown/gray and old.. So you definitely won’t be expecting a lot from the place. That’s why it will be a pleasant surprise to visitors how interesting and unique this park is from among other wildlife attractions. We haven’t even been to the grey kangaroo area, but we were already surprised to find a wallaby just hanging around the visitor boardwalk in the koala area – DSC_0145 DSC_0149 I also noted that it was in this park that I really got to see a lot of kangaroo activity, with a lot of ‘roos jumping around and hanging out with kids and adults. I’ve gone to quite a few where these animals would just lie on the grass, seemingly uninterested with the human activity around them. DSC_0267   DSC_0239 In addition to this, I think the best thing about the kangaroo area here is its greenery. There is an abundance of grass and trees around (so the view is much better than in Featherdale Park). The koala area did not disappoint as well, because there was actual movement here, as there was a koala moving across the tree branch when we went there – DSC_0169 DSC_0170 DSC_0171 But then, soon after these shots were taken, it was back to its usual lazy, sleeping pose on the tree 😛 LOL – DSC_0176 DSC_0175 So yeah, there’s not much fun and games in this bit of the zoo.. And it doesn’t help that my sister and I have just been from Taronga Zoo in Sydney, where I was blessed to have taken a video footage of really wild koala action (will post that soon when I get my hands on WordPress Premium 🙂 ). But still, I am really pleased with this visit as it was a one-stop shop for my sister to view animals that are native to Australia. She was able to feed an emu as well, which tickled her hand so much 😀 – emu   And for the first time in my Aussie life, I’ve actually been able to take a decent photo of an eastern quoll (which I saw in Tasmania, but was moving so quickly there that it was impossible to take a good shot) – DSC_0214 And last, but not the least, hooray to finally having good photos of a not-so-cute (since it’s huge) but seemingly cuddly (which is actually not, as wombats bite! so you have to feed them from the ground) wombat – DSC_0234 DSC_0229 DSC_0227 DSC_0233

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Encounters with Tasmanian Devils

30 Apr

I recall that during my childhood days, I was interested more in cartoons from Looney Tunes than the Disney ones (no offense to Disney fans out there :D). My favorite back then was Tweety. Taz, the destructive one, was one of the other characters I had fun watching.

I’ve seen kangaroos, koalas, and wallabies here in Australia but I’ve yet to see a tasmanian devil in the flesh. So I remember telling my husband how disappointed I am when we went to Healesville Sanctuary because the only tassie devil in the park chose to nap when we were there 😛

Hence, checking out a tasmanian devil was on top of my list when we went to Tasmania.

Choosing between Bonorong Wildlife Park and Tasmanian Devil Conservation Park, the latter won out because of its proximity to Port Arthur. We wanted to see if we can swing by the historical site after our visit to the park.

Tasmanian devils are not exactly cute, little, cuddly creatures. They look more like giant rodents, understandably because they are now considered the world’s largest surviving marsupial –

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Now we can actually note only a very little resemblance to our mischievous Taz, huh?

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Our brief visit to the conservation park made us feel sympathetic to these fierce-looking, high pitch screeching marsupials, as we came to know that they are already considered endangered species and now face a grave threat from a cancer known as the facial tumor disease. We came to understand that the relatively expensive entry fee ($33 per person) we had to pay for this seemingly unkempt park is being used to care for them and keep them from extinction.

In fact, much effort is being done to keep their habitats as natural as possible, and so they let these devils just wander about in the wild around the area. That’s why you can see warning signs for these wildlife while on the road –

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We’ve been told that cameras are installed around the vicinity to monitor these animals.

While in the park, we were given the chance to get up close to these creatures:

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Forgive the photo, it was the best my husband was able to take of me while in the observation glass. But seriously, they could have tried to keep the glass cleaner and clearer so we can see better, don’t you think so? 😛

We were able to witness a feeding of these tassie devils. We learned that it was a long ritual of finding the meat, running off and trying to chase the one who was able to take the meat on its jaw, and then a seemingly tug-of-war mutual feeding of the meat. They normally feed on wallaby meat, so that’s what you can see them feeding on in the following photo.

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There were other animals in the park. And birds too. I was able to take a photo of the Eastern quoll below.

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After quite a number of visits to different Aussie parks, I was finally take some decent photos of kangaroos, and get to actually touch one and get a souvenir photo of the moment.

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This is a big step for a ‘neutral’ person like me who neither likes nor hates pets. I just enjoy looking at them 😉

So that caps off our visit to the park. We dropped by Port Arthur to see if the little time we have left is worth paying the expensive entrance fee.. But ended up just having lunch at the cafe there 😀

We then decided to go to Mt Field National Park instead, because Law wanted to see Russell Falls.

You need to pay for a National Parks pass when entering Mt Field, and the hike to the falls takes about 15 minutes. It’s good that it wasn’t such a challenging hike because we were a bit disappointed because the falls at that time seemed dry 😦

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Then, as if we haven’t tortured ourselves enough from the long drive back to Hobart city, we made a quick visit to Mt Wellington summit. I think it was one of the scariest nights in my life 😛 I was horrified by the steep, narrow, winding road going up the summit. Add to that the fact that the sky was already pitch black when we were up in the mountain already, and we’ve almost committed several road kills along the way.

Good thing the ride back to Zero Davey was a short one.. And we were able to give ourselves an excuse to indulge in some more seafood at Fish Frenzy in Elizabeth St Pier;)

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Finally concluded this quick but delightful trip to Tasmania. I wouldn’t mind going back 🙂