Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park ~ Phone: (02) 43751100
Our Address ~ 1 Darkinjung Road, cnr Peats Ridge Road, Calga NSW, Australia 2250 ~
info @walkaboutpark.com.au

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Media Releases

14th December 2015

lonelyThe Walkabout Park team can’t contain their excitement. The news is hot off the press, coming through in the early hours of this morning.
General Manager Tassin Barnard says “We are ecstatic! The only way to get into Lonely Planet is to give visitors such an amazing experience that they all write to Lonely Planet and tell them to put you in the book! This is the best endorsement any tourist destination anywhere in the world could dream of.”
This is what Lonely Planet has to say about Walkabout Park. “You can visit this park by day to see native Australian animals roaming free, but we recommend the Wild Night Out where you can camp in the park overnight.” The Wild Sleep Out is an awesome after dark adventure. Not just a ‘bed in the bush’, the rangers take you on a wild walkabout to meet the most amazing creatures foraging in the bushes and trees along the tracks before you retire to the campfire and then to bed, comfortably under canvas or in your own private fully equipped cottage.

Open every day (except Christmas Day), the day time experience is just as much fun. With friendly kangaroos and emus hopping happily through 80 acres of natural Aussie bush, you can walk the bush tracks accompanied by weird and wonderful wildlife as you visit ancient Aboriginal sites, or take a leisurely stroll around the Animal Loop visiting wombats, Tasmanian devils, koalas, flying foxes, cockatoos and all of their other spiky, scaly, feathery and furry friends, including a little petting zoos where you can feed the alpacas and bunnies.

When you visit Walkabout Park, you know that you are making a direct contribution to conservation. This amazing wildlife sanctuary, open to the public every day, is also doing a huge amount of conservation work ‘behind the scenes’, working with universities and other institutions across Australia and around the world. With no government funding, 100% of visitor gate fees fund the conservation work of Walkabout Park’s dedicated team of rangers and volunteers.
This magnificent and absolutely authentic nature adventure destination is right on Sydney’s doorstep, only 10 minutes from Gosford, right here on the NSW Central Coast. Their website walkaboutpark.com.au describes the experiences you might have there.

 

 


14th December 2011

Baby Bilby Joey Joy for Festive Season

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park at Calga has two more reasons to be excited this festive season with “Nikita” the Greater Bilby successfully giving birth to twin joeys.

Nikita and dad Otis, are already the proud parents of one joey. The twins are now proving to be a handful for mum, reported Karen Anderson, Park Ranger.

A total of three young Bilbies have now been born at Walkabout Wildlife Park and are all destined to be released into the wild in South Australia and Western Australia where feral predators do not dominate.  These are the first bilby joeys on record to be born in captivity in NSW.

Karen Anderson reports that “this endangered species is slowly coming back from the brink of extinction thanks to the collaborative efforts of a number of dedicated organisations”.

Greater Bilbies were once found across 70% of Australia until the effects of habitat loss, competition for food and burrows, and feral predators pushed these cute animals onto the endangered species list 50 years ago.

Nikita and her young can be seen on display these Christmas holidays, and all they want for Christmas from visitors to Walkabout Park is a name, so come and take part in our naming competition to win free passes for your next visit.

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park is open 7 days from 9.00am to 5.00pm and, located only an hour north of Sydney and near Gosford on the NSW Central Coast, is ideal for a family outing.

 

 


30th August 2011

 Baby bilby joey joy at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park

Walkabout Park at Calga is buzzing with excitement after the birth of the first bilby joey to be born in captivity in NSW in more than 10 years – and this Father’s Day, everyone’s invited to celebrate.

While families across Australia gear up to celebrate Father’s Day this Sunday, the day will be an extra special one for first-time bilby dad Otis and mum Nikita, who have just welcomed a brand new addition to their family.

The male Joey emerged from his mother’s pouch for the first time on 26 August, to the great delight of Walkabout Park staff.

“The birth of the bilby joey is tremendously exciting because it is the first to be born in captivity in NSW in more than ten years,” said Walkabout Park’s General Manager, Tassin Barnard. “Bilbies are an endangered species. We are extremely proud that we are doing our part to protect this treasured native Australian animal from extinction.”

This Father’s Day, Walkabout Park is giving visitors the opportunity to come join in the park’s celebrations.

Not only will visitors have the opportunity to meet the Park’s new addition who will be on display with his mum and proud dad, they will have the chance to name the joey by entering a baby naming competition. Dads will also gain entry to the park at kids’ prices as part of the special Father’s Day promotion.

The 80-acre bushland setting of Walkabout Park is popular with people of all ages. Visitors can interact with, and learn about, many of Australia’s best-loved native animals.

“At Walkabout Park, except for some species that must be in camps e.g. to stop them eating the other animals or because they are part of controlled breeding programs, animals are not caged but roam freely around the park,” explained Ms Barnard. “As well as Australia’s iconic animals like koalas and dingoes and devils and pythons, visitors can get up close and personal with all kinds of wallabies, kangaroos and emus in their natural environment.”

This Sunday, the stars of the park will undoubtedly be the bilby joey with his parents Nikita and Otis. The Joey’s birth is a landmark achievement for Walkabout Park which has participated in the Bilby National Recovery Program since 2010.

“Coincidentally, National Threatened Species Day is on September 7th and we’re looking forward to having this opportunity to promote awareness of Australia’s precious native animals,” said Ms Barnard. “Walkabout Park’s friendly and knowledgeable rangers will be on hand to talk about the bilby and the ongoing plight they face in the wild, as well as all of the other Walkabout Park wildlife.”

For an outing that the whole family can enjoy, Walkabout Park (open every day) is an ideal choice, located only an hour north of Sydney. Visitors can bring their own food, or buy food from the cafe, and have a picnic accompanied by the animals in this beautiful bushland setting.

 

 


11 October 2009

Walkabout Park Extends a Helping Hand to Child Abuse Survivors

When Eva House, a refuge for young female survivors of child abuse, approached Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park in Calga for help, the park jumped at the chance to support their fundraising efforts and awareness-raising campaign.

Eva House, opened in March 2006 at the Mayumarri Healing Centre in the Hunter Valley, helps young women heal from the devastating effects of childhood trauma and abuse. Now a group of dedicated volunteer carers is walking 166 kms, from the Mayumarri property in Quorrobolong all the way to Sydney, to raise both money and awareness for their cause.

Money is desperately needed as Eva House receives no government funding and relies completely on the generosity of members of the public. Awareness is just as important. Megan P. (Eva House carer and herself a survivor of abuse) has sent out this appeal, “Spread the word and let everyone and anyone know what we’re doing. The more people who know the better! There are so many young women out there whose lives could be changed just from knowing they’re not alone.”

Although the Eva House volunteers were simply looking for a place to park their campervan overnight, Walkabout Park is able to offer comfortable beds and hot showers to the foot-weary walkers, as well as a delicious BBQ dinner and a healthy breakfast before setting out on the next day’s walk.

Sally Smith, Walkabout Park’s Director of Operations and Education, says, “We are so pleased that Eva House approached us for support. This is such an important issue in our society, and we are happy to help by sponsoring the walkers’ meals and accommodation. They are welcome to use our Wild Sleep-Out facilities, and they will also have a chance to see some of our nocturnal animals at play – that is, if they are not too tired!”

The walkers will arrive at the park at approximately 5:30 pm on Sunday 18th October and leave before 10:00 a.m. on Monday to continue their seven-day walk.

Members of the public can help by sponsoring the volunteers for each kilometre walked (please email the organisers at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out how). Alternatively, you can make an online donation at http//www.everydayhero.com.au/eva_house_walk, or a direct deposit to the Mayumarri Gift Fund (BSB: 032516, Account No.: 150540).

For further enquiries about the walkers’ rest stop at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, please contact Sally Smith, Director of Operations and Education

 

 


 

bettong-in-nest

Threatened Species Finds Safe Haven

 The Rufous Bettong, a threatened species of macropod (kangaroos and wallabies) has made a triumphant return to the bush of the Central Coast. Twelve of the diminutive marsupials have been released into a 32 hectare fox proof section of Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park at Calga. It is hoped that the bettongs, 7 females and 5 males will breed, increasing the population of this species classed as vulnerable by the New South Wales Department of Environment and Climate Change. The 3Kg Rufous Bettong was once common throughout the Central Coast and Sydney regions, however, populations have been decimated by fox predation and habitat loss. An estimated 30 million foxes and 20 million feral cats in Australia have had a dramatic impact on mammals which weigh less than 5kg, with one species of bettong, the desert rat-kangaroo, already becoming extinct. By breeding Rufous Bettongs and promoting responsible cat ownership, Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park hopes to help prevent this beautiful animal going the way of the desert rat-kangaroo.

“We are very excited because four of the females currently have young in their pouches” said Park Manager Nick Carson.

Standing at only 30cms, Rufous Bettongs emerge from a well concealed grassy nest at dusk to feed on seeds, roots, tubers, fungi and grass. “They have the amazing ability to carry nesting material in their prehensile tail, carrying it to a suitable spot to sleep for the day” said Park Manager Nick Carson.

“They are an endearing animal because of their fearless nature and frequent vocalisation” said Mr Carson. “The males have an amusing mating ritual where they swish their tails and tap a foot to judge a females interest. If the female is not ready to mate, she will lie on her side and kick vigorously at the male and growl loudly” Mr Carson said.

Day visitors to the Walkabout Park can usually see the bettongs sleeping in their nests, however, it is at night when the feisty marsupials really come to life. “We frequently conduct nocturnal walks as part of our evening BBQ and Wild Sleep-Out programs, and visitors really enjoy seeing the bettongs hopping freely around the bush as they would have 200 years ago” Mr Carson said. “The tragic reality is that most Australians have never even heard of a Rufous bettong, let alone seen one” he said.

The Walkabout Park is open daily from 9 – 5pm and after hours by appointment.

For further enquiries, please contact Nick Carson Park Manager.

 

 


 

7th September 2009

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park’s newest resident now has a name!

daiquri-joeyAfter agonising over hundreds of suggestions, the rangers at Walkabout Park have chosen the name Banjo for their new koala joey. The Park was inundated with entries via email, fax, mail and from Park visitors, with the most popular names following an Aboriginal or cocktail theme after the joeys mum, Daiquiri. The Park rangers however went for the name Banjo after Australia’s most famous bush poet A.B. “Banjo” Paterson, after deciding an iconic animal like the koala should be named after an iconic Australian.

The first person to submit the name Banjo was Monica Parkinson, and so, she will receive an annual pass to Walkabout Park for one adult and one child to watch the little fella grow.

Three other entrants also submitted the name Banjo, and will receive day passes to Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park for one adult and one child. Those winners are the O’Brien family, Deanne Boyd and Lisa, Bob and Chloe Luxford.

All winners will be contacted directly, and passes will be mailed out.

For further enquiries, please contact;
Nick Carson
Park Manager

 

 





17th April 2009
Official opening of the new Flying Fox Exhibit at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park – Monday the 20th of April 11am
After allowing its newest residents, 10 grey-headed flying foxes, some time to settle in Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park at Calga is holding the opening ceremony of their purpose built exhibit this Monday.
In a fantastic example of private enterprise, a government department and a conservation group working together, these gorgeous animals were relocated from Lane Cove National Park with the help of volunteers from Ku-ring-gai Bat Conservation Society.
Since 1990, under a joint co-operative agreement between National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and Ku-ring-gai Bat Conservation Society Inc (KBCS), a captive group of Grey-headed flying-foxes, kept by KBCS for education purposes, has been maintained within the Kukundi Wildlife Shelter at Lane Cove National Park (LCNP). These intelligent, amazing flying-foxes have changed thousands of people’s negative perceptions of bats during the years they have been on display at LCNP.

Having heard of the excellent education program Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park (AWWP) were conducting KBCS approached them to ask them for their help so that the important education program KBCS was conducting with its flying-foxes could continue.

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, at Calga, a sanctuary for rehabilitated and wild indigenous animals of all kinds agreed to take the KBCS education flying-foxes.
The healthy and well-adjusted breeding colony of 10 bats, aged between 1 and 20 years old, have settled in extremely well.
The animals, all hand-raised and not able to survive in the wild, play a very important public relations, scientific and educational role as ambassadors for bat-kind.
- Walkabout Park rangers and Bat Society volunteers give regular talks, introducing people to these intelligent creatures;
- The bats are alert and active even during the day and, although in a protective enclosure, visitors can get up close to watch them as they move around, feeding, socialising and caring for their young; and
- If you would like to see them in action at night, Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park offers an exciting “Wild Night Out” experience where visitors camp-out with the rangers, experiencing the bush, the bats and the other animals at night.
- After just a short time spent with these flying mammals, even the most bat-wary find themselves taking up the cause to “Save the Bats”.
Visit AWWP and meet the education flying-foxes including:
- the charming and sweet little Hannah, 21 years old this year, she wears a red band
- the stubborn and delightful Stephanie, 21 years old this year, she wears a purple band
- the wicked Bella who takes great joy in peeing on the top of her carer’s head whilst he/she is not looking, she has a yellow band
- the beautiful Molly – did you know that flying-foxes are ticklish?
- the baby of the group 1 year old Jackson who watches the older boys who are getting ready for the mating season and can’t quite understand that when he does what they do (dare we mention what bits they are displaying!) the older girls are just not impressed. Jackson has a dark blue band
- the oh so gorgeous Fleur who has a white circular spot on the head just behind her ear. She wears a dark green band that is if she hasn’t removed it, it seems that she doesn’t like to wear bracelets – maybe she just doesn’t like green!

- Tragically, because of bush clearing and illegal killing of these animals, the Grey-headed Flying-fox, Pteropus poliocephalus, one of the largest bats in Australia with a wingspan of up to 1.2 metres, is now listed by the government as ‘vulnerable and likely to become endangered’.
- And the next step after ‘endangered’ is ‘extinct’! Think about it. We’re not just losing tiny little animals now. This is an animal with a wing-span as tall as a 12-year-old child.
- These beautiful sociable animals play an extremely important role in maintaining the balance of nature, eating wild fruit, flowers and nectar, spreading pollen and seeds linking plants separated by cleared areas which smaller animals can’t do, and themselves being important food for animals like the Powerful Owl which is also classed as vulnerable.

 

 



Fleur22nd January 2009
Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, looking after a little Aussie Battler this Australia Day weekend!

Tragically, because of bush clearing and illegal killing of these animals, the Grey-headed Flying-fox, Pteropus poliocephalus, one of the largest bats in Australia with a wingspan of up to 1.2 metres, is now listed by the government as ‘vulnerable and likely to become endangered’.
And the next step after ‘endangered’ is ‘extinct’! Think about it. We’re not just losing tiny little animals now. This is an animal with a wing-span as tall as a 12-year-old child.
These beautiful sociable animals play an extremely important role in maintaining the balance of nature, eating wild fruit, flowers and nectar, spreading pollen and seeds linking plants separated by cleared areas which smaller animals can’t do, and themselves being important food for animals like the Powerful Owl which is also classed at vulnerable.

Since 1990, under a joint co-operative agreement between National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and Ku-ring-gai Bat Conservation Society Inc (KBCS), a captive group of Grey-headed flying-foxes, kept by KBCS for education purposes, has been maintained within the Kukundi Wildlife Shelter at Lane Cove National Park (LCNP). These intelligent, amazing flying-foxes have changed thousands of people’s negative perceptions of bats during the years they have been on display at LCNP. Unfortunately due to a change of NPWS regulations captive animals are now no longer to be kept within NSW National Parks. KBCS were faced with the sad decision to move its education animals to a different location.

Having heard of the excellent education program Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park (AWWP) were conducting KBCS approached them to asking them for their help so that the important education program KBCS was conducting with its flying-foxes could continue.

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, at Calga, a sanctuary for rehabilitated and wild indigenous animals of all kinds has agreed to take KBCS education flying-foxes is looking forward to welcoming the flying-foxes to their new home on Sunday the 25th of January.
Last year, unable to continue to house the colony, Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, a sanctuary for rehabilitated and wild indigenous animals of all kinds in Calga on the northern outskirts of Sydney, was approached for help. Now,
- The Walkabout Park team has built a $30,000 new home for the bats, made possible because of the very generous contributions of $5,000 by the National Parks & Wildlife Service and $5,000 by the Ku-ring-gai Bat Conservation Society;
- The Walkabout Park rangers have ‘had their shots’, thanks to subsidised services by the Kariong Medical Centre, to make sure they can handle the bats safely;

- Staff at Lane Cove National Park have been very supportive of the rehousing of KBCS education flying-foxes to Calga. They have helped dismantle the old flying-fox enclosure at LCNP and have transported it to Calga where it is to be used to house other smaller creatures. The AWWP and KBCS would not have been able to manage this move so smoothly without their help and would like to extend their thanks to all the Lane Cove National Park staff members involved, especially ranger Simon Nicol; and
- The Bat Conservation Society volunteers are poised to help resettle the colony, to train Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park’s rangers, and to conduct their already popular informative educational talks for visitors at the bats’ new home.
The healthy and well-adjusted breeding colony of 10 bats, aged between 1and 21 years old, is due to be transported to their new home on Sunday January 25.
The animals, all hand-raised and not able to survive in the wild, play a very important public relations, scientific and educational role as ambassadors for bat-kind.
- Their young (one has a suckling baby right now) are released into the wild when they are ready to be independent;
- Walkabout Park rangers and Bat Society volunteers give regular talks, introducing people to these intelligent creatures;
- The bats are alert and active even during the day and, although in a protective enclosure, visitors can get up close to watch them as they move around, feeding, socialising and caring for their young; and
- If you would like to see them in action at night, Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park offers an exciting “Wild Night Out” experience where visitors camp-out with the rangers, experiencing the bush, the bats and the other animals at night.
- After just a short time spent with these flying mammals, even the most bat-wary find themselves taking up the cause to “Save the Bats”.
Visitors are welcome to visit the bats who will be on display for the Australia Day long weekend.

Visit AWWP and meet the education flying-foxes including:

- the charming and sweet little Hannah, 21 years old this year, she wears a red band
- the stubborn and delightful Stephanie, 21 years old this year, she wears a purple band
- the wicked Bella who takes great joy in peeing on the top of her carer’s head whilst he/she is not looking, she has a yellow band
- the beautiful Molly – did you know that flying-foxes are ticklish?
- the baby of the group 1 year old Jackson who watches the older boys who are getting ready for the mating season and can’t quite understand that when he does what they do (dare we mention what bits they are displaying!) the older girls are just not impressed. Jackson has a dark blue band
- the oh so gorgeous Fleur who has a white circular spot on the head just behind her ear. She wears a dark green band that is if she hasn’t removed it, it seems that she doesn’t like to wear bracelets – maybe she just doesn’t like green!

 

 


9th April 2008

New Home for Endangered Wallabies!

Australia Walkabout Wildlife park is excited to announce the arrival of 5 endangered yellow-footed rock wallabies.

Arguably the most beautiful of all macropods (kangaroos and wallabies), yellow-footed rock wallabies are grey-brown with yellow feet and a striking yellow and brown banded tail. Adults stand up to 60 cm high and weigh 7-13 kg.

Since European colonisation, wild populations of yellow-footed rock wallabies have been decimated by hunting, fox predation and competition with feral goats. For these reasons, yellow-footed rock wallabies have become endangered in nsw, with only 100 individuals remaining in the wild.

Australia Walkabout Wildlife park provides a safe haven for these wallabies by offering suitable habitat and removing the key threatening processes for this species. The 5 wallabies have been released into the 80-acre wildlife park, where they are protected from foxes by an electric fence.

Park Manager – Nick Carson – “We have some amazing habitat for rock wallabies at the park, with large caves, boulders, cliffs and crevices providing shelter. These rock wallabies have very strong climbing instincts, and tend to head for higher ground, and will even climb trees. They have amazing feet, with rippled soles like a basketball, short nails and stiff hairs which provide grip on steep surfaces. They are extremely well adapted to arid environments, and can survive without drinking water for long periods”

The best time to see the rock wallabies at australia walkabout wildlife park is in the morning and late afternoon when they emerge from rocky shelters to feed.

For further details, phone nick carson on (02) 43751100 or visit walkaboutpark.com.au

 

 


pygmy-possum

10th December 2007

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park receives Eastern Pygmy Possum (Cercartetus nanus) from Taronga Zoo

One of the world’s smallest marsupials the Eastern Pygmy Possum, weighing an average of only 24 grams, and measuring 15 centimetres from head to tail is rarely seen.

At only about 12 months of age, this tiny marsupial “Marni:“ (formerly known as Miss Piggy”) already has a huge history. “Marni” found her way in to a suitcase in Leura in the Blue Mountains back in April. She was very young and had to be handraised by a wildlife carer, she also had an injured leg and torn ear. “Marni” was then transferred to Taronga Zoo where they treated her injuries and continued to handraise her. After many months of rehabilitation the decision was made not to release her, as the chances of Marni surviving in the wild would be minimal. So Marni was offered to Walkabout Park and accepted, then arrived at Walkabout on Friday 2nd November 2007.

Many of Australia’s small marsupials such as the pygmy possum, are under threat from introduced predators such as cats and foxes. Fortunately, Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park is surrounded by a fox proof fence, ensuring the Parks population of animals such as the Pygmy Possum are safe. Eastern Pygmy Possums have been sighted in Walkabout Park in the past.

The Eastern Pygmy Possum is part of the Burramyidae family, which contains the smallest of possums. Although they are thought to be common, these nocturnal animals are rarely seen due to their size, and timid nature. These possums are agile climbers, using their tails and feet to grasp. Breeding mostly occurs from late spring to early autumn. The Eastern Pygmy Possum feeds on a diet of nectar, pollen and occasionally fruits.

 

 



31st October 2007

Three orphaned kangaroos with amazing stories of survival have found a new home at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, Calga.

Anja and Laila the red kangaroos, and Tegan the wallaroo were all orphaned in separate incidents earlier this year. Even as tiny, dependent joeys the survival instinct was so strong, they each overcame remarkable odds to find a safe haven at AWWP. Anja, from Wilcannia was found alive in her dead mothers pouch on the roadside. Amazingly she survived a further six days as a road train passenger before being dropped off on the Central Coast and being treated at Kulnura Veterinary Hospital. After successful treatment, she was brought to the Park where staff raised her on a diet of kangaroo milk formula.

Laila from Bourke was orphaned when hunters shot her mother. A kind-hearted woman rescued her and cared for her until she was ready to be released. The woman feared the risk of releasing Laila into the local area frequented by hunters was too great, so she contacted Central Coast Wildlife Arc.

Tegan the Wallaroo became an orphan when her mother was hit by a car in the Yarramalong Valley. She was hand raised and released successfully. However, several months later, she literally bounded into the arms of her carer after being chased by trail bikes and dogs. Due to the trauma of this incident, she refused any further release attempts, and so she was brought to the safe haven of AWWP.

The three kangaroos will be released into the Park today (Wednesday 31st October).

Enquiries - Nick Carson, Park Manager (02) 43751100 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 


 22nd October 2007

Ancient Life Comes Back To Calga

Michael Durrant’s “World of Fossils” exhibition bound for Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, Calga.

Michael Durrant is the co-founder of Australian Reptile Centre Canberra. He is also the curator of fossils at that famous attraction, as well as at the new Alice Springs Reptile Centre “Fossil Cave” museum. Michael visited Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park a couple of years ago and decided it would be a perfect spot to create a small museum that displays fantastic extinct animals.

His “World of Fossils” exhibition opens on 26th September 2007

Michael: “The thought of creating an ancient museum in such beautiful and ancient country seemed so appropriate – it just made perfect sense. The sandstones and shales in the park probably contain fossils of Triassic period fish ”

This new, permanent exhibition displays a wide range of specimens from Michael’s incredible 12,000 item cast collection, and depicts a range of ancient wildlife groups that have lived across Eastern Australia over the past 700 million years.

The specimens were mostly prepared by Michael at his studio near Young, and include some major groups of invertebrates such as trilobites and ammonites, through to the rise of fish and amphibians. There are three cases on dinosaurs, and one features the only example (a skull) of the giant tyrannosaur Daspletosaurus on display in Australia.

Michael: “Basically there is something there for everyone who has an interest in prehistoric wildlife – from the earliest jelly-fish, to fish that swam in the rivers around the central Coast 300 million years ago.

This is stage 1 of a larger museum that will be developed over the next couple of years, and new specimens will be added all the time.

Another specimen that will no doubt cause considerable comment is the massive 1.4 metre lower jaws of a 50 million year old crocodile. Michael: “This beastie is so huge I wouldn’t be surprised if people think they are looking at some kind of science fiction animal. It is certainly not what people expect when they think of crocodiles today”.

The moulding, casting, painting and scripting for the exhibition was a painstaking, one-man process, and the displays took Michael around 5 months to produce. Michael has been developing an international reputation over the past 15 years for the quality of the castings and exhibitions he prepares, with one high profile university professor and author describing him as “a national treasure”. Michael receives no government assistance for this massive and ongoing project.

The new owners of Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, Gerald and Tassin Barnard, see the new exhibition as a great addition to the venue that already attracts thousands of visitors with a keen interest in wildlife and the natural world.

Gerald Barnard: “We have wild kangaroos, koalas, lizards and emus now scampering around a building that displays key moments in the evolution of life on earth –anyone would be hard-pressed to find a more perfect combination of wildlife attractions”.

Michael: “The “World Of Fossils” collection is an extension of the work I began with Australian Reptile Centre Canberra. There is just so much that I can’t display in Canberra because of the usual space restrictions – it is a real shame to have all this great prehistory just sitting on shelves in my warehouse when thousands could enjoy so many interesting “beasties” from the past. We have a delightful home at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, and I will promote the venue from our next two museums (planed for 2008) in North Queensland and Tasmania”.

The new exhibition will be free to all visitors to the park from 26 September.

Michael Durrant will be available at the official opening on 26 September

 

 


 

Monday 8th October, 2007.

Dingo Pups arraive at Australia Walkabout Park

Calga’s newest residents, 2 Alpine Dingo Puppies have arrived at the park and have settled in extremely well into their new purpose built exhibit.

The two dingo pups were acquired from a wildlife park in Lithgow NSW and are not related. They are pure bred dingoes with both their parents DNA tested to confirm this. The female dingo “Kirraka” is white with her name being chosen by students at Morisset Public School. The name is aboriginal for “Honey/white”. The male who is ginger in colour, has the name “Munji” , aboriginal for “Lightning”. Both are now approximately 3 ½ months old.

The dingoes are walked around the park daily, with visitors given the opportunity to pat and photograph them and go along on their daily walk.

Dingoes can be found across Mainland Australia and are not present in Tasmania. They arrived to Australia with Asian fishing people some 3 –4000 years ago. They are now looked upon as being Australia’s Native Dog.

The dingo played an important role in Aboriginal culture, and was frequently displayed in Aboriginal art.

Domestic dogs are able to interbreed with dingoes, therefore it is difficult to determine the status of the pure dingo strain. Pure dingoes have only four basic coat colours: ginger, black and tan, black or white: all others indicate hybrids.

Dingoes are meat eaters (carnivores) but are opportunistic hunters; catching whatever is available from kangaroos, wallabies and birds to small reptiles and birds eggs.

Munji & Kirraka are the first dingoes at Walkabout Park, and can be seen playing happily together every day.

 

 


 

5th September 2007

Fathers Day at AWP

The rangers at australia walkabout wildlife park, are proud to announce the recent hatching of seven Emu chicks.

The chicks weighed an amazing 500 grams at hatching, and were unable to walk until about 24 hours old. The chicks are extremely well camouflaged with brown and cream stripes, and look quite different to the adult birds.

Amazingly, park rangers found the nest close to an aboriginal engraving of an emu over 1,000 years old. the male emu had made a simple nest of leaves, and was sitting quietly on the eggs when discovered last month. The eggs were incubated for approximately 60 days without any help from the hen bird. Unable to leave the nest, the father cannot eat or drink for this entire time, surviving off his fat reserves and dew.

After hatching, the chicks didn’t eat until they were about 3-5 days old, relying on the absorbed yolk until that time. They are currently being fed a diet of “chick starter” crumble as well as plant material and insects.

The chicks will lose their amazing camouflage stripes at the age of 3-5 months, when they will begin to look much more like an adult bird. They are growing rapidly, and will be 1.5 metres tall and 40kg in just 12 months!

The emu is the emblem of australia walkabout wildlife park, due to the presence of Darkinjung rock art depicting an emu dating back 1,000 years.

The chicks are proving a huge hit with park visitors, due to their inquisitive and playful nature.

Enquiries phone – Nick Carson, Park Manager

(02) 4375 1100


 

Keith ends Walkabout

Calga’s newest resident, Keith the Koala has settled into retirement at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park.

Keith grew up in the suburbs of Port Macquarie, and apparently lived a fairly uneventful life until July this year when he was found with an injured leg. His full name is Parklands Keith after the area he was found and his rescuer.

He was admitted to the Koala Hospital in Port Macquarie, with the hope of eventual release. However, after several weeks of treatment, it was decided that Keith couldn’t be released back into the wild due to his leg condition which, although no longer painful, restricts movement. Although he can climb fairly well, Keith would be unlikely to survive in the wild due to the threat of dogs and cars.

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park entered into an historic agreement with the Koala Hospital to provide a safe, comfortable home for Keith. After arriving a fortnight ago, Keith has taken to doing what koalas do best – sleeping. Occasionally he will stir for a mouthful of his favourite Eucalyptus leaves, or to change positions, only to doze off again.

Port Macquarie Koala Hospital treats up to 300 koalas a year, mainly for Chlamydia, dog attacks and car accidents. The hospital is funded by donations, is run almost entirely by local volunteers.

Keith is the first koala to call Walkabout Park home, and he can be seen every day of the school holidays, from Boxing Day.

Contacts

Cheyne Flanagan
Supervisor
Port Macquarie Koala Hospital
Ph (02) 6584 1522 from 8am to 2pm

 


 

Spinifex Hopping Mice Find Sanctuary!

hopping-mouseA little known Australian has found a home at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, at Calga. Five spinifex hopping mice Notomys alexis have joined a wide variety of native animals at the Park including grey kangaroos, several types of wallaby and emus .

Spinifex hopping mice, weighing only 35 grams and measuring 100mm long are naturally found in the arid zone of central and Western Australia. They are light brown above, and grey-white below with a long tail up to 150mm long. The mice shelter in deep burrows to avoid the heat in the Spinifex covered sandflats they call home.

It definitely pays not to be a fussy eater in the desert, where food is often hard to come by. These mice are omnivorous, and will eat a wide variety of seeds, roots, greens and invertebrates depending on what is available.

Spinifex hopping mice can respond quickly to boom times after rainfall, with a pregnancy lasting only thirty two days, and the ability to breed at any time of year. The litter averaging three to four young, are left in the nest when the mother forages for food. The mice are sexually mature at sixty days.

Whilst the Spinifex hopping mouse is considered at lower risk, five of the original ten species of hopping mice have become extinct in historical times.

The four females and one very happy male can be seen at Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park from today. The girls names are Poppy, Lilly, Blossom, Sweet-pea, and the boy is named simply The Bob.

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park is situated 20 minutes North of Wahroonga, on Peats Ridge Rd at Calga. The Park is 68 hectares of virgin bushland surrounded by an electric fence to exclude foxes, cats dogs and rabbits. Visitors can enjoy free range kangaroos, wallabies, and emus, and ancient Aboriginal art sites. Four different guided tours run every day – 10:00 Kangaroos and Coffee. 11:00 Aboriginal Sites Tour. 1:00 Bush Tucker and Bush Medicine Tour. 2:30 Pets and Predators. The Park also has a great café and gift shop.

 



Kangaroo's birthday to be celebrated

An eastern grey kangaroo that was hand reared by a Umina family will celebrate his third birthday at Calga Springs Sanctuary on World Environment Day on Saturday, June 5.
The Umina family found him as a "pinky" in his dead mother's pouch down in the Snowy Mountains area and brought him back to the Coast to raise in 2001.
At around 10 months old, they realised he needed to be in a larger and safer environment and took him to the Sanctuary where he could live out his life safely.
"He would have perished without their intervention," said Rae Fiechter, secretary of Friends of Calga Springs Sanctuary. "It is not known if he would survive in the wild due to his early contact with humans. He leads a very comfortable existence where he is."
Mr Fiechter said the kangaroo was named Rodney and was a wonderful character who thought he was human.
"He snoozes under a desk in the air-conditioned office to escape the heat of the day. Rodney is very laid back and comfortable with people as he was hand reared from such a young age. He is a favourite with sanctuary staff and visitors alike," he said.
The Friends group will hold a party for the kangaroo on Sunday, June 6, at the sanctuary, starting at 10.30am. Activities for the day will include a colouring competition, birthday hat making, face painting, storytelling by Cilla the Possum Lady and games.
There will be a sausage sizzle and café meals available.
The event will be a fundraiser for Friends of Calga Springs Sanctuary's "Bringing Back the Bettongs" project.
Sanctuary entry fee includes a 90-minute easy-paced guided walk.
With inquiries, phone: 4375 1100 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Press release, May 13 Rae Fiechter, Friends of Calga Springs Sa

 

 

Opening times

Open every day except Christmas Day.eee

Day time visitors do not need to book

Open at 9am - Every day

Close at 5pm - Every day

Evening and overnight experiences 
must be pre-booked

Contact us

Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park

1 Darkinjung Road, cnr Peats Ridge Road, Calga, NSW Australia 2250 • Phone (02) 43751100 • Outside Aus +61 2 43751100 • Fax (02) 43751257

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Park Entry Prices

For group programs or for a private ranger-led tour, contact us for a quote.

Standard Tickets
$25.00
$15.00
Adult
Child - aged 3 to 15 years
   
Family Discounts
$70.00
$10.00
Family - 2 adults + 2 children
Extra child - with $70 Family Pass
   
Free Entry - eligibility conditions apply
No charge
No charge
Child - aged 0 to 2 years
Carer with Companion Card - accompanying disabled client
   
$20 Discount Tickets - must show ID Card
Teacher
Student
Senior
Pensioner
20% off Standard Adult Rate
20% off Standard Adult Rate
20% off Standard Adult Rate
20% off Standard Adult Rate

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Ranger-led activities

Admission price includes daily ranger-led activities.

Please check with us as program may change.

 

Time What's on

09:30
10:00

10:30
11:00
11:30
12:00
12:30
1:00
1:30
2:00

2:30
3:00
3:15
3:15

3:45
4:00

Meet Waffles the Pig
Meet the mob: Kangaroos & Emus
Southern Hairy Nosed Wombat

Boomerang throwing
Dingo encounter
Koala encounter
Pat a Python
Echidna encounter
Night Hunters - Predator Birds

Tasmanian Devil encounter
Koala feed-time
Bare-Nosed Wombat encounter
Bush Tucker & Bush Medicine
Aboriginal Sites visit (only on
weekends & holidays)

Meet the mob: Kangaroos & Emus
Flying Fox introduction

0:00 Wild Emu and Kangaroo Feeding
10:30 Meet Billy Bilby
11:00 Koala Talk
11:30 Meet a Dingo
12:00 Boomerang Throwing
12:30 Pat a Python
1:00 Bush Tucker & Bush Medicine (weekends & holidays only)
1.00 Bush-Ochre Face Painting and Bunny Fun in the Farmyard
1:45 Lizards, Turtles and Dragons
2:15 Tazzie Devil Feeding 
2.30 Quoll Feeding
2:45 Koala Feeding
3:15 Flying Fox Feeding
3:30 Wombat Feeding
4:00 Wild Emu and Kangaroo Feeding
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