Entry fee of 28$ is probably not cheap , but you can spend as many hours as you wish in there and the park is well kept, the animals look well and the park staff is very friendly and knowledgeable. Three times a day they have "meet and greet" shows with various native animals - "Meet the koalas", "Wombat & Friends", "Molly's farm", "Penguin show" and the open all hours "Kangaroo walk through".
Of course we could have visited Perth zoo - entry is $29 and you have the opportunity to see a lot of other non-Australian animals, but we wouldn't get the interaction with the animals that people get at this park.
Meet the koalas:
Koalas are marsupials and live from 10 to 14 years, sleep about 18h a day, only eat eucalyptus leaves and drink no water, have poor eyesight but a good sense of smell and hearing. They have 2 thumbs and 3 fingers and are native to the East coast of Australia.
The females have a pouch and give birth to only 1 joey at a time, which only measures 2cm and spends the first 6 months in the pouch.
Their fur is very soft but they have a weird smell (maybe all those leaves they eat!)
|My brother in law and I - we could only touch the back legs of the koala|
Wombat & friends:
At this show a few keepers stood by their favourite animals, and as people walked along they could take photos of them, touch them, ask questions... of course the most popular was the wombat with a long row of people eagerly waiting to take a photo with him.
Wombats are also marsupials, native to the South east of Australia and Tasmania.
They are very muscular with stubby legs and grow to about 1 metre in length and weigh up to 35kgs. They have large front teeth and powerful claws and in the wild they could attack humans if threatened. But when brought up in captivity they can be very docile and enjoy interaction with their owners. They live in burrows and eat grasses and roots.
|This wombat looked very docile and used to all the fuss|
Other friends - Kookaburras and Tawny Frogmouth:
Here we also saw various birds, a snake (which I wouldn't touch!!), and other marsupials.
For the first time I saw the Blue-winged Kookaburra which is actually native to northern Australia and Southern New Guinea, but I was more familiar with the Laughing Kookaburra which I often see around some of Perth's neighbourhoods, but which is actually native to the East coast of Australia. Their call sounds like human laughter.
The Tawny Frogmouth (an owl like bird), are largely unseen during the day due to their motionless roosting and are mostly active at night when they hunt for insects and spiders.
|Top: colourful birds, Tawny frogmouths. |
Bottom: Laughing kookaburra & blue winged kookaburra
Little Penguins or Fairy penguins are the smallest of all 17 Penguin species, and the only species that live in southern Australian waters.
They are about 43cm in height and weigh about 1,5kgs, eat fish, and their feathers provide waterproofing. They nest in rock crevices or burrows, lay 1 to 3 eggs which are incubated during 35 to 42 days by both parents.
There were only 3 penguins here and we watched one of the 3 daily shows but they were no longer too interested in the fish being thrown in the pool, as only 1 of them would dive in to eat, the other two just looked on.
|One eats, the other two look on, probably already too full...|
Kangaroo walk through:
This huge grassed area was full of various species of kangaroos and wallabies.
They move by hopping, have very strong hind legs and large feet and use their strong tail for balance when hopping and as a fifth member when moving on all four. They are herbivores, live in mobs with a dominant male who is usually the oldest and biggest and he is the only one who will mate with all the females.
In the photos you can see a couple of white kangaroos, but I forgot to ask if they are albino kangaroos or just a different species.
They were mainly lying down I think due to the heat of the day. There were buckets with food and you could feed them but not too many were interested.
They just lay there very relaxed and I even tickled the belly and neck of the lonely one of the photo at the bottom. He seemed to enjoy it!
|Relaxing in the shade - I ticked the belly and neck of the the one standing alone belly up|
Dingos & Quokkas:
We only saw one Dingo, which is a wild dog, and he was lying in the shade, feeling the heat.
They weigh from 13 to 20kg and are up to 60cm high and they originally came from South East Asia.
The Quokkas, are macropods (marsupials of the kangaroo family) the size of a small cat. They are also herbivorous and mainly night animals, weigh from 2,5 to 5kgs and are from
40 to 54cm long.
Mainly found in the small island of Rottnest just off the coast of Perth.
When originally discovered by the Dutch mariners that landed on Rottnest Island, they were mistaken for giant rats, hence the island's name - "rattennest".
The word quokka derives from the Aboriginal Nyungar word "gwaga".
On the island they are very cheeky and ask people for food and are even know to steal food left outside the tents at the island's camping grounds.
|The cheeky Quokkas|
We didn't get to see the "Molly's farm show", but if you have small kids it's very interesting, as they get to see what farm life is like-sheep-sheering, feeding small farm animals, etc.
|The entrance to the wildlife park|
|Outside a helicopter dropped new visitors - very fancy!|
And here is an Australian nursery rhyme with the Kookaburra