Animal Diaries Archive
It was a dark and stormy day...
31 March 2006
It was a dark and stormy day. A flood of biblical proportions was upon us, with the ground soft and wet like an overcooked marshmallow. "Crikey!" I said as the leaf truck sunk down to the side steps. "We're bogged!"
A tear formed in the corner of my eye as I rolled my ankle exiting the vehicle. "Grab that rope Steven, we are going to have to winch this baby out of here."
We soon found ourselves in a very sticky situation; the truck full of leaf was sitting in the hot sun and we had no water to hose it down with; this was making the leaf wilt at an alarming rate. If we left it too long, the koalas back at the Zoo would be having their leaves crispy - certainly not their favourite dish!
"This tree looks like a good one," Steven said, as he connected the winch to a great big one.
"This will get the arms going," I said as I began winching. Two hours in and not much progress, we decided to report back to the Zoo. We hoped to get another vehicle to rendezvous at alpha bravo to retrieve the leaf we had cut for the koalas, which was now drying out like the sands of the Nullabor plain. Three and a half hours from the point where we sunk in the mud like a badly cooked sponge cake, Tash had arrived to pick up the leaf, only to find she too had gotten bogged. Like a ferret in a rat wheel, she was going nowhere.
"Crikey! Not another vehicle bogged," Steven said, seconds before he tripped and fell face-first in the mud only to replace himself in an upright position. Unfortunately for him, he was now looking like some sort of mud rat.
Now we had to set our priorities straight. The koala leaf was by far the most important thing, and due to the fact that the leafy was stuck in the mud like gum to a blanket and wasn't going too far too soon, we decided to try and release the newcomer from the bogie lagoon. What followed was twenty minutes of winching and forty minutes of moving leaf from one vehicle to the other! The troop carrier, now full of leaf, was ready and equipped for departure. So all three of us squeezed into the troopy, and feeling like some sort of tightly packed sushi roll, we commenced our journey back to the Zoo, leaving the leafy in the bog.
"It will be the talk of the Zoo," Steven and I said simultaneously as we entered the Zoo grounds. And too right, it was!
It became apparent that everyone knew as we waddled up to the store to find another means of getting the leafy out. Both feeling very tired and running out of the elbow grease which was much needed to continue our winching efforts, we heard amongst the employees "Little bit bogged, hey boys?", "How did you get bogged?", "Is it out yet?" - all very helpful questions, I might add. After consulting with some other staff for a while we teed up another two boys to come out and help. After a further two hours or so of winching and towing, we were finally on our way.
All in all, we got bogged at around 9:00am and didn't get the leafy out of the mud until around 6:00pm. Nine hours in the mud was a big day, but there's never too much we can do to supply our furry little friends with the most succulent leaf possible!
Our Amazing Koalas
Koalas vary in size and colour depending on where they live in Australia. Koalas found in the southern distributions (Southern NSW and Victoria) tend to be ...more