Our visit to Werribee Zoo was on Saturday 19 August. Fourteen people met at the entrance to the Zoo and were joined there by Sarah, our Guide for the day.
Group at gate
We were shown the nocturnal exhibits where the Eastern Barred Bandicoots are kept. Their numbers in the wild were so critically low, that in Victoria they now only survive in fenced areas and zoos.
Our second stop was at the Orange-bellied Parrot (OBP) enclosure. There are three male OBPs living in the aviary. We were very pleased to have the opportunity to view these extremely rare parrots.
Male Orange-bellied Parrot (Photo by Graham Smith)
We were then guided through various enclosures. African Lions, African Wild Dogs, Silver-backed Gorillas and Cheetahs. Sarah was happy to answer questions and talk at length about the measures taken to ensure that all the animals in the care of the Zoo are kept healthy, both psychologically and physically, and also stimulated so as not to become bored or depressed.
There were plenty of opportunities for photos:
Photographers at work
Three sleepy hippos
At lunchtime, the sun came out and we enjoyed a picnic lunch before boarding the Safari bus about 2.00 pm.
The safari tour lasted for about 45 minutes. We were driven through savannah habitats containing groups of large herbivores such as Rhinos, giraffes, zebras, Mongolian Wild Horses, Addaxes, Elands, Indian Antelopes and many others.
At the end of the tour, we enjoyed an afternoon tea break at the Bistro where we were entertained by Meerkat activity just outside the restaurant windows.
Report and photographs by Margaret MacDonald
There are a number of wonderful local Friends Groups that provide ANGAIR members and the community with opportunities for involvement.