Animal Diaries Archive
Burrow is a Blast!
29 May 2008
Most people aren’t aware how active wombats can be. Being nocturnal, wombats are mostly active at night. So when you go to most zoos, you’ll see their wombats are pretty sleepy all day! Well, not here at Australia Zoo. Our wombats can get quite wild!
Out of our eight wombats here at the Zoo, Burrow is particularly playful, especially during this time of year. Burrow was our first wombat born here at the zoo and has just had her fifth birthday. She is definitely coming in to her own and making a place for herself among the other wombats. She is easily wound up and loves our daily enrichments which can include playing with balls, water or sand filled shells or food parcels. Wombats can run very fast, up to 40 kilometers an hour for short distances; and I’ll tell you Burrow gets pretty close. She loves chasing the keepers around the enclosure!
Wombats also play pretty rough; when playing with each other their playing can definitely be confused with fighting. Although it is just nipping and tackling each other, it’s a good thing the wombats have pretty tough skin. They like to jump around and wag their bottoms in the air to let us know they are ready for some fun. Sometimes they will even roll around on their backs so we can give them some tickles. They can also be very vocal as well and they’ll make swishing noises when they are looking for attention.
We love to give our wombats lots of attention and enrichment. Sometimes they just get scent trails or special food hidden around the enclosure. But my favourite enrichment and definitely a favourite for the wombats, is blanket play. They just go nuts! They get so excited it only takes a few minutes and they are after you. We lay the blanket on the ground and they will start with a sniff and a scratch. Then we just wiggle it around, put it over and around them and RUN! We have to run fast because they won’t be far behind. Burrow is the fastest and is right at our ankles. It’s pretty fun to watch.
So next time you’re at the Zoo and you see the wombats chasing the keepers or each other around, make sure you stop and watch us have some fun!
Our Amazing Common Wombats
On the mainland Common Wombats grow to an average length of 1m and 27kg in weight, yet may reach up to 1.2m in length and up to 35kg. The Tasmanian Wombat is no ...more