Archive for May, 2009

Australian Reptile Park and Wildlife Sanctuary

The Australian Reptile Park and Wildlife Sanctuary was established in 1948 by Australian naturalist Eric Worrell. It is located at Somersby on New South Wales Central Coast, about an hour drive north of Sydney, situated in a bushland setting with streams and waterfalls.

The park specializes in reptiles and holds one of the largest collections of reptiles in Australia, including both native and non-native species. Many additional specimens are kept behind the scenes for research and breeding activities. Several hundred specimens of highly venomous snakes are kept in the venom production unit. The Sanctuary has a snake and spider venom-milking program, and is the sole supplier of a variety of venoms used for snake and funnel-web spider anti-venom in Australia. The venom-milking program has been in place for over 50 years, and saves over 300 lives each year.

Birdland Animal Park, Batemans Bay

Birdland Animal Park is a small but well presented wildlife park in Batemans Bay in New South Wales. The park has over fifty species of Australian native animals, birds and reptiles in a lush garden setting on eight acres of waterfront. Australian animals you will see include Koalas, Kangaroos, Common Wombat and Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat. There is a black cockatoo that was given to the Park in 1971 by forestry workers.

Sea World, Gold Coast, South-east Queensland

Sea World is a popular theme park on the Gold Coast in south east Queensland. As well as the animal attractions there are lots of rides and activities making it a fun day out for the whole family. However, this article is about the animals and does not cover the rides and water slides – you will need to visit another site if you want info about that kind of stuff! Now we have cleared that up, let’s talk about the animals at Sea World.

Oceanworld, Manly, Sydney

Oceanworld is located right next to the beach in Manly, Sydney and is only a 2 minute walk from Manly Wharf. It is built on three levels, with the main entrance on the middle level, with the main oceanarium occupying the lower level, and a reptile exhibit on the upper level.

The main Oceanarium on the lower level features huge sharks, large stingrays, marine turtles and a large diversity of marine life. The four million litre tank has a 100m long underwater tunnel As you walk through the tunnel, you will encounter sharks up to 3.5 m long and weighing in at 300kg, and see giant stingrays passing overhead.

Aquarium of Western Australia, Perth

The Aquarium of Western Australia (AQWA) houses one of Australia’s largest aquariums and underwater viewing tunnels, and houses the largest collection of Western Australian marine life in the world. Launched as AQWA in 1991, the aquarium used to be known as Underwater World. It is located at Hillarys Boat Harbour about 20 minutes drive north of Perth city centre.

While you are at Hillarys Boat Harbour, you can also enjoy a variety of restaurants, bars and cafes, shopping and other leisure activities

AQWA is divided into distinct regions showcasing the different marine life found around the 12,000km of Western Australian coastline, from the cold southern ocean to the tropical northern waters.

UnderWater World, Mooloolaba, Sunshine Coast

UnderWater World is an oceanarium and aquarium situated in Mooloolaba on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, about an hour drive north of Brisbane. Here you can see a diversity of marine life and freshwater life including huge sharks, massive stingrays, sawfish and thousands of tropical reef fish, as well as a number of marine mammals.

One of the main attractions is the 80m long transparent Oceanarium tunnel the takes you through the 2.5 million litre aquarium tank, with huge stingrays and sharks passing over your head as you go through the tunnel. The exhibits are divided into eight different zones including the Rocky Shore exhibit, the Living Ocean, Seal Cove, the Otter display, the Upper Billabong and Lower Billabong, the main Oceanarium Tunnel and the Crawly Creatures zone. There are over eighteen presentations throughout the day to give you more information about the animals.

Sydney Aquarium, Darling Harbour

Sydney Aquarium is located in Darling Harbour, just a short walk from the centre of Sydney. The Aquarium has an impressive collection of Australian aquatic life with over 12,000 animals including sharks, stingrays, platypus, little penguins and crocodiles and much more. Darling Harbour itself is a top spot for a day trip in Sydney, with various sight-seeing tours and tourist activities, including Sydney Wildlife World which is located right next to the Aquarium.

The Aquarium is divided into a number of themed areas featuring different water creatures

  1. Northern Oceans: includes touch pool, Great Barrier Reef oceanarium

National Zoo & Aquarium, Canberra

The National Zoo & Aquarium is a combined zoo and aquarium situated on about 25 acres five minutes from the centre of Canberra. It has a range of native and exotic animals, with the Australian wildlife including kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, dingoes, wombats, Tasmanian devils. The combination of aquarium and native and exotic animals adds to the interest.

The aquarium features reef sharks in a 200,000 litre salt water tank. There is also a Barrier Reef feature with brilliantly coloured reef fish and other marine life. The lower floor of the aquarium houses the freshwater displays with a range of aquatic creatures from freshwater rivers and lakes.

Rottnest Island, Western Australia – Quokkas

Rottnest Island is famous for its population of Quokkas. There are about 10,000 of these small kangaroo relatives on the island. Rottnest Island, or Rotto as it is affectionately called by the locals, is located 18 km off the coast of Western Australia. The island is about 11km long and 4.5 km at its widest point.

The Quokkas on Rottnest Island have become major tourist attractions and they are friendly creatures and will sometimes come right up to visitors for a pat. You will get some great photo opportunities with quokkas, but feeding them is prohibited.

Dolphin Feeding at Monkey Mia, Shark Bay

Monkey Mia is located at Dolphin Beach on the shores of Shark Bay, Western Australia. It is famous for its hundreds of kilometers of white-shell beaches and clear blue waters, and for the wild dolphins that make the area their home. Monkey Mia is one of the top spots in the world for getting up close to dolphins in the wild. The area is a World Heritage area is a major tourist attraction with visitors from around the world coming to see the dolphins and stay at the nearby Dolphin Resort.