Zoo News

Irwins, buried treasure, and the Easter Binturong at Australia Zoo these holidays!

Irwins, buried treasure, and the Easter Binturong at Australia Zoo these holidays!

Well you’ve heard of the Easter Bunny, and likely the Easter Bilby, but have you heard of the Easter Binturong?

Also known as a “bearcat”, the binturong is a beautiful animal native to South-East Asia. With his long white whiskers, ability to disguise himself into the rocks, and his cheeky sense of adventure – it’s no wonder that Jaya the binturong bounced into to the opportunity of hiding Easter eggs around Australia Zoo for Easter Sunday. Guests are encouraged to join us on the day to search for these Easter eggs, with some great prizes to be won!

Jaya will be helping out the Irwin family as they get busy, gearing up to entertain guests with their croc shows and performances from April 3 – 7! Performing live in the Crocoseum from 11:30am, Bindi and the Jungle Girls will be entertaining the crowd before Bindi joins Robert and Terri in the Wildlife Warriors show.

Over the Easter period there’s plenty of treats including a free breakfast on Good Friday between 9am – 10am, free hot cross buns and Easter eggs on Easter Saturday, followed by our main Easter egg hunt on Sunday!

On Tuesday April 7, 100 lucky visitors to the zoo can even have the chance to meet Terri, Bindi and Robert Irwin. Be in the first 100 people to sign up to Crikey! Magazine on the day and you’ll be able to have your first issue signed by the original Wildlife Warriors themselves.

But the fun doesn’t stop there, and neither do the Easter treats. Australia Zoo will hold a zoo-wide treasure hunt for the duration of the holidays that will take you from admissions to Africa, Bindi’s Island, South-East Asia and back. By solving the puzzles, you’ll eventually wind up in a secret location to claim your treasure – so be sure to pick up your treasure map on admission!

Guests will also love checking out some new additions to Bindi's Island over the school holidays, as Australia Zoo will be launching a brand new shipwreck entry point for the island! Complete with an impressive hull, palms, bamboo, and hanging vines, visitors to the island will feel like they are being transported to a tropical paradise. Australia Zoo's ring-tailed lemurs will also be moving to Bindi's Island soon, hopefully in time for the Easter holiday period - reinforcing that authentic island feel. Watch this space for news on this one!

Zoo Keeper for a Day will be back and running from April 4 – 18 for those wanting to try their hand at zoo keeping, and there’ll be pony rides happening too! For all the details and to check out the full Easter school holidays activity guide, head to: http://www.australiazoo.com.au/visit-us/calendar/320-easter-holiday-fun

Jump crocs with the Irwin family on the trip of a lifetime!

Jump crocs with the Irwin family on the trip of a lifetime!

Did you ever think the chance to jump crocodiles with the Irwin family on their annual trip to the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve would be open to you? Well, it is - thanks to a special partnership with Australian Geographic!

Set on 135,000 hectares, the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve in Far North Queensland is a haven for endangered flora and fauna. This special place - a living memorial for the Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin, consists of 34 ecosystems, each offering sanctuary to a huge array of wildlife.

Australian Geographic Society will take on 20 volunteers over two week-long expeditions in August for the opportunity of a lifetime! Joining the Irwin family, the Australia Zoo team and leading scientists researching on the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve; volunteers will help with studies on spear-tooth sharks, rare flora and fauna and of course, saltwater crocodiles.

Using Steve Irwin's original crocodile capture techniques, the team spend a month each year capturing crocodiles to insert satellite tracking devices in the species, before releasing them back into the wild. This satellite tracking project in partnership with University of Queensland has taught us invaluable information about crocodiles and their behaviour.

It's bound to be an adventure but it isn't for the faint-hearted, getting hands on with wildlife and camping in an extremely remote part of Australia. But don't worry, there's a team of full-time caterers to provide you with delicious meals to keep you going, flushing toilets and hot showers, and transport to and from Weipa is included. You might even feature in a story for Australian Geographic!

There are only 20 spots available, so be sure to get your expression of interest in soon for hands-on wildlife research experience and memories that will last a lifetime. Full details can be found below or you can read more, here: http://www.australiangeographic.com.au/travel/travel-with-us/2015/03/steve-irwin-wildlife-reserve-scientific-expedition

WHEN: 19-26 August | 26 August-2 September 2015
WHERE: Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve, Cape York Qld
COST: $AUD3500 per person (incl. GST) for non-members; $AUD3100 (incl. GST) for AG members (AG subscribers). Price includes transport from Weipa Airport to the Steve Irwin Reserve and return. All costs are ex-Weipa.
GOUP SIZE: limit of 10 volunteers for each trip
BOOKING: Phone 02 9263 9825 or email society@ausgeo.com.au.

Win your wife’s weight in gold (golden lager!) this St Patrick’s Day at Australia Zoo!

Win your wifeâs weight in gold (golden lager!) this St Patrickâs Day at Australia Zoo!

Putting a modern twist on Irish folklore, Australia Zoo is calling all men to join us on St Patrick’s Day, Tuesday March 17th, for the chance to win their wife’s weight in golden lager!

With the “pot of gold” concept dating back to leprechauns (typically mischievous men in Irish mythology who stored their gold in a pot at the end of the rainbow), we thought we’d give one man the gold he’ll love most after racing around Australia Zoo - BEER!

So how does some lucky leprechaun win this big pot of icy cold gold? By bringing along a “wife” (which can be your real wife, your sister, your friend, or even an obliging stranger – as long as she’s over the age of 18) and being the fastest around an obstacle course while carrying her. Australia Zoo’s St Patrick’s Day wife-carrying race will have you racing down a slip and slide, jumping hurdles, dodging obstacles and doing the limbo with your wife on your back – all in the name of gold!

Competing in pairs, two couples at a time, wife-racers are encouraged to complete the course in the fastest time to win. To make this a game of tact and not just the luck of the Irish, you’ll win your wife’s weight in beer. So choose your “wife” wisely – you’ll have to carry her for the duration of the 200 metre obstacle course!

 There’s up to 10 cases of liquid gold to be awarded to the winner, as well as 2nd and 3rd place prizes too.  Taking place just outside Australia Zoo’s Crocoseum following the midday Wildlife Warriors show, there’s bound to be spectators to cheer you on and watch you reap the rewards of your hard work if you are the fastest to complete the course.

While kids can support the wife-carrying race competitors from the sidelines, there’s plenty of interactive St Patrick’s Day fun for them too including free face-painting until 11am, themed games and the chance to win a free green ice-cream by hunting for gold coins around the zoo.

To register for the Australia Zoo wife-carrying race, simply email info@australiazoo.com.au with your details, specifying the subject as “wife-carrying race registration.”

You’ve got to be in it to win it! More St Patrick’s Day event details can be found here: http://www.australiazoo.com.au/visit-us/calendar/318-st-patricks-day


Australia Zoo and Greyhound team up to boost Sunshine Coast tourism!

The Australia Zoo crew brought their animal friends along to launch the new Greyhound Australia service!

Yesterday, two of Queensland's most iconic brands, Australia Zoo and Greyhound Australia, proudly launched an exciting new and improved coach service connecting passengers in Noosa to Australia Zoo in Beerwah on the Sunshine Coast.

Joined by 91.9 Sea FM's BarRat, Jess and guest host Lisa Hyde, plus Australia Zoo's exotic wildlife; holiday-makers, backpackers and Noosa locals enjoyed a free breakfast at Noosa Heads to celebrate the launch. Those that joined in the launch at the Noosa Heads bus terminal were also able to meet and get photographed with an impressive boa constrictor, iguana, and colourful macaws - residents of Australia Zoo's newest exhibit, Bindi's Island!

The red Greyhound coaches now feature colourful Bindi's Island branding, showing off Australia Zoo's beautiful macaws and the incredible three-storey treehouse featured in the new island exhibit. With the new and improved service running daily and on the roads now, tourists and locals can be easily connected between Noosa and the iconic conservation destination and major tourist attraction.

The launch marks the continuation of a solid partnership that will not only boost tourism opportunities on the Sunshine Coast, but contribute significantly to the wildlife conservation efforts of Australia Zoo - with a $2 conservation contribution per passenger being donated to Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors with each Greyhound travel and entry package purchased.

This conservation donation is expected to amount to almost $50,000 per year, generating much-needed funds to save sick, injured and orphaned native wildlife patients at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, the major project of Australia Zoo's charity, Wildlife Warriors.

The Noosa to Australia Zoo service has various stops along the way, including Peregian, Coolum, Maroochydore and Mooloolaba to ensure that visitors to Australia Zoo can enjoy a relaxing day out without the hassle of driving.

To book tickets or to find out more about this service, head to: www.greyhound.com.au/content/australia-zoo

Australia Zoo's animal stars paint to save wildlife!

Anthony the cockatoo helps out Mitch Gobel with his artwork.

Melbourne-based artist, Mitch Gobel, officially announced his $25,000 donation from art sales to Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors last week, with the assistance of a few of Australia Zoo's wildlife stars!

The unique artist and Wildlife Warrior has been busy adding the finishing touches to his custom artwork over two days on site at Australia Zoo, with the aim of hanging the artwork in the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital as a token of his generous donation to the charity.

Some precious Australia Zoo residents including Edna the koala and Anthony the sulphur-crested cockatoo helped Mitch out with their painting skills, leaving their footprints on the artwork to represent the plight of their cousins in the wild.

Inspired by Steve Irwin's legacy to protect wildlife and wild places, Mitch quit his job in horticulture almost one year ago to pursue a life-long dream creating art that reflects the beauty of the natural world, and to save wildlife in the process. His unique resin artwork is unlike any other, and as the art world recognises his talent, Mitch's contribution to the conservation efforts of Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors grows.

Mitch said he was happy with his artwork, and was excited to be continuing his contribution to wildlife conservation.

"I was expecting the animals to be ice-skating a bit on the resin surface, but it's turned out really well," said Mitch.

"Conservation is the driving force behind my artwork, and Steve and Terri are pioneers in saving wildlife and wild places so I'm really proud to be supporting Wildlife Warriors and the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital," he added.

Wildlife Warriors' key conservation project, the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, has treated over 55,000 native Australian wildlife patients in its ten year history. This generous donation from Mitch will go toward the ongoing treatment of sick, injured and orphaned wildlife at the hospital.

To learn more about Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors' work or to donate to their projects, visit www.wildlifewarriors.org.au