1 October 2013
Kelsey, Australia Zoo's Curator, is bursting with excitement over our recent, and future, arrivals!
Spring has definitely sprung at Australia Zoo this year with a myriad of babies - the most recent of which is my favourite, our echidna puggle, soon to emerge from mum's pouch as the developing spines become uncomfortable! We can't wait to show you an updated picture in the next couple of weeks, and with less than 25 echidnas ever born in captivity this is an extremely significant event worldwide as well.
Of course we've all gone ga-ga recently with our very first tiger cubs to be born at Australia Zoo. Again, while these little boys don't know it, they are genetically incredibly important to the global Sumatran tiger breeding program and this is another worldwide milestone.
A pair of Southern cassowaries are another of our Australian endangered species getting in on the action! With only 1200 remaining in the wild in far north Queensland Rocky and Babinda are also helping out on the breeding front. Rocky is devotedly sitting on three eggs of which he is extremely protective and we're hopeful that his eggs will be fertile. He has a bad boy reputation coupled with a formidable weapon - an elongated inner toenail and does not stand for any nonsense. He is definitely a great dad, not letting a sole near his precious eggs, sitting tight until they are due to hatch in November. Babinda on the other hand is less interested, but that's just how it rolls when you're a cassowary - dad does all the hard yards until the kids are old enough to look after themselves.
In addition to these recent arrivals, 2013 has already blessed us with two baby Southern White rhinoceros, Mango and Winston, five koala joeys, Kirra, Madelyn, Lewis, Scrubby, Nitro and Gumnut, just beginning to spend most of their time on mum's back and a wombat joey, Milo.
From a reptile perspective things are just kicking into gear with the resident water dragon males duelling for territory and girls. Not to be left out, our crocs are just starting to get a little amorous, sometimes making the afternoon croc demo a little embarrassing but I guess that is all part of the job. With any luck it also seems that our female woma pythons, another threatened species from arid Queensland, are developing eggs. All in all it looks like we should have plenty of baby reptiles later in the year too!
Last, but most certainly not least, is Rosie, our 5 year old giraffe who is so pregnant I swear her belly is almost touching the ground - and that is saying something for a giraffe!! "Any day now" is what we've been saying for the last month. An exact date is tough to guess when the pregnancy is around 14 months so for us it's a waiting game.
You never know, by the time you read this Australia Zoo could be celebrating yet another first for not only the Zoo but also for Queensland! We'll keep you posted!