G’day, meet the critters from Oz!

It’s Australia Day, so why not mark the occasion by finding out more about DZG’s residents from Down Under . . .

KANGAROO

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Probably the most iconic Australian animal is the kangaroo. Here at DZG we have two male Western Grey kangaroos called Lou and Harold  – aptly named after two popular Australian soap characters!

Western greys are a common sight across Australia.

Males are much larger than females and can reach up to 225cm tall – they are also known for their distinct strong curry-like smell, so take a sniff at their enclosure!

LAUGHING KOOKABURRA

dzg_kangaroo_6web__0Also popular is the laughing kookaburra.

The bird is the largest member of the kingfisher family and is found in Australian forests, woods, gardens and towns.

Kookaburras are known for their raucous laughter-like ‘kook-kook-kook-ka-ka-ka’ sounding call, which they use to establish territory in family groups.

One bird will start with a low chuckle, before several others join in, which then entices neighbouring groups to start up, before the whole area is full of the cackling laughter sound.

Come and meet our resident kookaburra, Adelaide, and find out more about this vocal species in our daily show in the Go Wild! Theatre at 2.15pm.

 

WALLABIES

Parma wallabies are the smallest of all the wallaby species, and usually found in the woodlands, forest edges and scrubland where they eat grasses and leaves.

Did you know that all marsupial babies are born undeveloped and around the size of a kidney bean after 30 days.

Shortly before giving birth females lick a line of fur on her stomach, which the newborn climbs up as soon as it’s born, making its way into her pouch, where it latches onto a teat and continues to develop for the next few months.

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CHESTNUT TEAL

The chestnut teal is an Australian dabbling duck which inhabits coastal wetlands and estuaries. They form monogamous pairs which stay together outside of the breeding season.

The male has a distinctive green coloured head and mottled brown body, while the female has brown head and mottled brown body.

Her call also sounds like a loud laughing quack!

Spot them in the waterfowl pool, opposite the Discovery Centre.

BEARDED DRAGON

dzg_kangaroo_6web__0So called because anger or excitement causes the creature to puff out its throat, prompting a ‘beard’ of scales around its neck.

They live in the rocky and arid regions of Australia, where food is hard to find and will eat small lizards, insects, mammals, flowers, fruit and plants.

The species will run on their hind legs to escape predators.

MACLEAYS SPECTRE STICK INSECT

dzg_kangaroo_6web__0Macleays spectre stick insects are one of the larger species of stick insects and can reach up to 150mm

The females are wingless, whereas the males are fully winged and able to fly.

Both sexes can range in colour from a light brown to green and they are found in Australia’s Eucalyptus forests.

 

BLUE-TONGUED SKINK

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