Day 9 Sunday 24 September – Launceston – Tasmania Zoo

We woke this morning to another cool, overcast and rainy day. We drove over to Nicole and Russell’s place and they took us to Tasmania Zoo. The zoo, which is privately owned and family-run, is situated on 900 acres of native bushland in the picturesque Tamar Valley and is home to Tasmania’s largest collection of native and exotic animals. They are dedicated to continuous contribution to wildlife conservation and to the education of the community at large. They are also committed to caring for injured and orphaned wildlife.
We were delighted to be able to see several Tasmanian Devils, who wandered up to the face to “sniff at us” and were less than a metre away, so we were able to really get a good look at them. Tasmanian Devils make their dens in hollowed out logs, old wombat burrows and caves. Devils usually sleep during the day and at dusk they emerge from their dens to begin their hunt for food, returning at dawn.
We saw lots of Australian Native Parrots and Cockatoos, as well as some more exotic birds like Macaws and Golden Pheasants. We saw a good balance of Australian Native Animals like Wallabies, Pademelons, Emus and Wombats, as well as animals from other countries like White Lions from Africa that looked very healthy and well-fed, Capybara – semi-aquatic mammals from South America, Cotton-top Tamarins, Marmosets, Black-tufted Capuchin and Alpacas. All the children, as well as the adults, enjoyed watching the antics of a colony of Meerkats while they were being fed and we had our morning tea – lovely banana bread – while we watched them.
The Zoo also had a large Jurassic Swamp area that was filled with life-like Dinosaurs. We followed a path around the area, through the bush to the sounds of dinosaurs coming from loudspeakers placed among the trees. As we wandered around the dinosaur exhibits, we saw several Pademelons, who quickly hopped away to hide in the surrounding bush.
The zoo was well laid out and the areas that the animals were housed in were quite large with perspex sections so that even the smallest child could see the animals. The rain held off for most of the time that we were there. By the time we left the Zoo, it was raining quite heavily, so we went back to Nicole & Russell’s place for a late lunch.
The two of us came back to our Villa to get some photos sorted and then went back to Nicole and Russell’s place for dinner, which Katharine made – yummy pasta bolognese and then we managed to get a photo of all of us together before the children went to bed. The adults then sat around chatting and enjoying each other’s company.
We have had a wonderful time in Launceston, despite the rain. Nicole and Russell have made us feel very welcome and it was wonderful to catch up with them and Bec, Frances and Eliza.


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