Animal Diaries Archive
5 November 2004All the animals in the native mammal department are weighed each month. From our tiny possums and gliders through to the sturdy wombats each are weighed to ensure they maintain optimal weights and health. Weighing is a very important part of monitoring our animals' health and well being.
Most of our animals actually enjoy weigh day as it is incorporated into our training and enrichment programs. Training the animals to walk up onto the scale without fear or fuss has been very important for our husbandry and for the comfort of our animals. By far the easiest to weigh are our wombats, which are always very eager to check out the scales as soon as they hit the ground! Our wombats are always rewarded for this task with a tasty morsel of food.
Many people would think that the Tasmanian Devils would be a difficult animal to weigh but they are actually very accommodating. Because the devils are very food motivated we are able to coax them onto the scales by rubbing the scent of food over the base of the scale – and once they get the smell they hop straight onto it in the hope of a bite to eat. All of this is achieved without having to physically restrain the animal – hence keeping a very positive relationship with them; they associate the scales with a good time!
We always endeavor to make this activity stress free and food rewards are always given!
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