Monarto Zoo is the largest open-range zoo in the world, set on 1,500 hectares about half an hours drive from our former home in the Adelaide Hills. I heard about a package called “Working with Wildlife” which involved spending a day with the keepers behind the scenes. I decided I would surprise Michael in October for his birthday. Little did I know, he had the same idea for me and beat me to it in March. The obvious thing to do was go together. We had an early start and after meeting the team, breakfast for the lemurs was the first job.
The rhino baby was adorable
and loved a groin scratch while mum tucked into some tasty greens.
We got up close with the meerkats
and tempted them with some delicious mice.
A cheetah breeding program at Monarto has been very successful. These four were the first surviving litter in Australia in 15 years.
There was a lure set up to give them exercise and hone their hunting instincts.
The real thing soon followed and they shared somewhat reluctantly.
This lion waited patiently for his meal
while the lioness paced outside.
We were then driven around the park in a 4 WD to admire some of the other residents. There were various antelope and deer.
This handsome bison was a bit embarrassed.
The Mongolian Wild Horses happily shared their space
with the zebra.
Each Cape Hunting Dog has unique markings and rather large round ears.
The highlight of the day was feeding the giraffes. We were instructed to keep the trailer between us and them
but no-one told the giraffes!
There is a gorgeous homestead ruin overlooking the savannah but I am unable to find any history on the building.
If you are in Adelaide, a trip to Monarto Zoo is a great way to spend the day.