Some people… er… animals have the best jobs. This sleepy Koala caught my attention on a recent visit to my home zoo in Adelaide. All he has to do is sit there and entertain the zoo visitors. Not a very difficult job, really. I’m sure I’d cope with such a demanding position – though, to be honest, I think I’d be asking for a slightly more comfortable seat.
Possibly the most colourful member of the marsupials in Australia is the Yellow-footed Rock Wallaby, shown in the pictures on this post. These photos were taken at the Adelaide Zoo, which also has a good collection of them at the Monarto section of the zoo.
These beautiful animals are primarily found in the northern parts of South Australia, especially in parts of the Flinders Ranges. It is also present in small numbers in far western NSW. Although I do not have a photo of one in their natural habitat, I remember seeing several of them many years ago just north of Quorn. They are amazing animals with their ability to scale rocky outcrops with ease.
Most people go to the zoo to look at the animals, birds and reptiles. I’m the same, but I must admit I also keep an eye out for plants and flowers which are growing in the grounds of the zoo. Adelaide Zoo is one of the zoos which has made a great effort to landscape the grounds with plenty of plants, especially Australian native species. On this visit I went without my wife, so I took a few photos so that she could see what was there and flowering. You can read about her interest in growing Australian native plants on her site here.
In addition to the Australian plant species at Adelaide Zoo, the gardeners have also planted many exotic plants in the enclosures of non-Australian animals, creating for them as natural an environment as possible given the severe restrictions on space. I think that overall the gardeners have achieved their aim.
The photos featured on this post are along the paths and purely decorative for the human visitors, though the local native birds such as the honeyeaters appreciate their plantings.
On several recent visits to Adelaide Zoo I haven’t been able to get a good photo of these otters. They’ve either been sleeping somewhere in their enclosure and out of view, or they’ve been cavorting around in their pool. Either way it has made photography difficult. You get that with nature photography.
The above shot is not ideal, what with their backs to my camera, but they were fast asleep and not moving anywhere in a hurry, so I have to be happy with this photo until my next visit. Hopefully I will get a better shot someday.
I must admit that I don’t know a great deal about otters, and this species in particular. That’s why the information boards such as the one below are so important in the education of the general public visiting zoos (click on the image to enlarge). I’ve also discovered that this is the smallest otter species in the world.
They eat a variety of mussels, snails, crabs and fish; that’s quite an interesting diet.
For more information about the oriental small-clawed otters, go to the Adelaide Zoo website here.
I love going to the Adelaide Zoo. It’s only about an hour’s drive from home and being a Life Member I can go any time I have an hour or two free when I am in the city. On one visit last year I managed several good photos of the hippopotamus.On other occasions this animal hasn’t been easy to photograph, especially when it stays under water for an extended period of time.