San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Koalas)

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Offline shyguy

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San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Koalas)
« on: October 22, 2018, 04:18 PM »
Australian Outback



The Australian Outback opened in May of 2013. It is home to the Koalas as well as many other species from Down Under.



A narrow path surrounded by lush vegetation leads into the Australian Outback area.



Tropical plants from around the world line the pathway, as seen in this Hawaiian garden.



This Mombasa Cycad from Africa was in bloom on this trip.



The Bismarck Palm from Madagascar is a very impressive site.






These totems mark the entrance to the Outback.



As this sign says, these totems were inspired by the log-artwork of the aboriginal Australians and totem poles by the North American Indians.



This carved Koala is perched atop one of the totems.



Birds of Australia




A pair of large aviaries are home to many species of Australian birds.



Inside the first aviary you'll find the smaller birds, like this Gouldian Finch.



Long-tailed Grass Finch



Diamond Doves



Sectioned off from the smaller birds, is the Kookaburra.



The Laughing Kookabura gets its name from its territory call that sounds like a laugh.



If you're lucky, you'll get to hear this distinctive laugh, which is widely used as a stock sound effect in movies with a jungle setting.



The second aviary houses larger birds from Australia.



Wonga Pigeon.



Grey-capped Emerald Dove



Masked Lapwing



The White-breasted Woodswallows like to stick together.



A White-breasted Woodswallow fivesome.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2018, 11:53 AM by shyguy »
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Offline JB

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2018, 09:12 PM »
Dang. Why don't we have any uber-colorful birds like those Gouldian Finches in my neck of the woods? If I hadn't seen the photos with my own eyes I would have doubted their existence. :o Obviously, birds are not  color blind! (The photos aren't photoshopped are they?) :P

I'm familiar with the kookaburra's laugh. Like you said, they use that sound in every jungle/Tarzan movie ever made. Not sure how an Australian bird manages to find its way into the jungles of Africa, though. Hollywood special effects, I guess.

The Kookaburra looks like it was designed by the same team that gave us Parkitect- their heads are 2 sizes too big. :D

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Offline shyguy

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2018, 06:15 PM »
The Kookaburra looks like it was designed by the same team that gave us Parkitect- their heads are 2 sizes too big. :D
Yes, it does indeed have a large head. It needs a big head to support its big, strong bill, which is uses to snatch up prey in the form of frogs, reptiles, and fish. As for its laugh, I think I've only heard it once on my many trips to the zoo. It usually sits quiet and just stares at you.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2018, 06:18 PM by shyguy »
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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2018, 07:54 AM »
Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Merry, merry king of the bush is he
Laugh, Kookaburra! Laugh, Kookaburra!
Gay your life must be

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Eating all the gum drops he can see
Stop, Kookaburra! Stop, Kookaburra!
Leave some there for me

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Counting all the monkeys he can see
Stop, Kookaburra! Stop, Kookaburra!
That's not a monkey that's me

Kookaburra sits on a rusty nail
Gets a boo-boo in his tail
Cry, Kookaburra! Cry, kookaburra!
Oh how life can be

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Offline shyguy

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Tasmanian Devil)
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2018, 03:40 PM »
Tasmanian Devil



As you make your way into the Australian Outback, you'll come across this rock formation, which actually houses the dens of the two Tasmanian Devils on exhibit.



Sculptures of various Australian animals inhabit the rock wall.



This Tasmanian Devil sculpture may be the only representation of the animal many guests will see, as they are nocturnal and hard to find during the day.



Their enclosure is filled with thick vegetation, which also doesn't help spotting these endangered animals.



If you arrive early in the morning, you'll have the best chance of seeing them active. This is Debbie, the female of the pair.



Here's Debbie doing what she does the best...sleeping. Tasmanian Devils are the largest carnivorous marsupials in the world. All marsupials carry their young in a pouch. Marsupials are only found in Australia and the Americas.



Conrad, Debbie's brother and littermate, is napping in his den. The pair were born in March of 2012. The Tasmanian Devil is found in only one place in the world...on the small island of Tasmania, off the southern coast of Australia.


« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 03:47 PM by shyguy »
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Offline JB

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Tasmanian Devil)
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2018, 09:09 PM »
They look rather cute. I remember the first time I saw a photo (or video) of a real Tasmanian Devil that I was disappointed. It didn't look anything like the one in the Bugs Bunny cartoons. :P It didn't emit incoherent blatherings. It didn't spin around like a mini tornado... Australia needs to get with the program and genetically modify these guys so they look and sound more like the their cartoon counterparts. :mad:up: (Just joking. I know that they're rare/endangered.)

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Offline shyguy

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Queenslander House)
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2018, 04:07 PM »
Queenslander House



The heart of the Australian Outback is the Queenslander House, home to the koalas and other Australian animals.



The Queenslander house is a classic Australian structure featuring an iron corrugated roof and large veranda that extends around most of the house.



A large tank located in front of the house holds rain water, collected from the roof of the structure.



And this signs tells all about it.



Inside the house is a room where daily food for the koalas is prepared. The koala's main diet is comprised solely of eucalyptus leaves. The average koala eats from 1 to 1.5 pounds of the leaves each day. With over a dozen koalas on exhibit, that's a lot of eucalyptus leaves.



There are many marsupials living in Australia, and a nearby sign tells all about it.



As you walk along the veranda, you'll pass by the animals on display.



This small aviary houses the Palm Cockatoo.



The Palm Cockatoo can be found in the forests of Australia and New Guinea.



Some interesting facts about the Palm Cockatoo.



Hoping around the grounds are the Parma Wallaby from eastern Australia.



These guys are nocturnal, so you'll typically only see them active in the early morning.



Coming up next...the koalas!


« Last Edit: November 09, 2018, 04:15 PM by shyguy »
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Offline JB

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Queenslander House)
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2018, 08:27 PM »
I assume that Palm Cockatoos, like other members of the Cockatoo family, are excellent mimics. Obviously, one of them heard the drum solo from 'Wipeout' at some point and replicated it as best it could. That was then copied by other Palm Cockatoos. And that is what prompts them to use drumsticks to this day... So ends today's lesson on Australian wildlife.

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Offline shyguy

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Queenslander House)
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2018, 09:07 PM »
^Your extra tidbits of "information" are always welcome and appreciated.  ::)
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Offline shyguy

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Koalas)
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2018, 11:49 AM »
Koalas



The male koalas are kept on one side of the exhibit, and the females on the other. Furthermore, the males are separated from each other, as they are typically a solitary animal and tend to fight amongst one another. This is the male enclosure.



Currently, there are seven males on exhibit.



Each koala gets its own "koala klimber" which provides shade, food, and most importantly, a comfy spot to sleep. Koalas sleep nearly 20 hours a day. The reason for this is that eucalyptus leaves provide very few calories and are difficult to digest. Thus, koalas live a very sedentary life.



So the majority of the time, you'll find the koalas sleeping... typically waking up to grab a quick snack, and then settling back to sleep. Being nocturnal, they are more active at night, when the zoo is closed. So it's hit and miss as to whether you'll see much activity during your visit to the exhibit.



At the opposite side of the Queenslander House is the female enclosure.



Here are the girls.



Sometimes you'll be lucky to see a young koala with its mother, called a joey. This joey is approaching adulthood, so he is becoming more independent and can be found more on his own, away from mom.






The next group of photos are of the females, as they seem to be a bit more active than the males, plus the sun is in a better spot to photograph them. ;)





















This "koala tree" sits near the female enclosure and allows kids to climb up with the koalas, providing a nice photo spot.


Koalas are in serious decline suffering from the effects of habitat destruction, domestic dog attacks, bushfires and road accidents. They are currently listed as "vulnerable" but many organizations believe their status should be elevated to "endangered". Due to the San Diego Zoo's conservation efforts over the years, the zoo has become famous for having the largest koala colony and the most successful breeding program outside of Australia.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2018, 11:51 AM by shyguy »
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Offline JB

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Re: San Diego Zoo - Australian Outback (Koalas)
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2018, 09:36 PM »
You managed to capture some nice (and cute) pictures of these nocturnal animals. :) Their plight sounds a lot like the Giant Pandas; solitary by nature, found in only one part of the world, and reliant on one specific food. They sorta have 2 strikes against them from the get-go. Hope they make it.

Obviously, Koalas are related to Yoda. (or vice versa).