To many of the staff at Wildlife Tropical North Queensland, zoo keeping is not just a job it is a passion. A passion that extends to the rescue and rehabilitation of sick or injured wildlife.
Kristy from our reptile department is no exception. Over the past few weeks she has been caring for a baby Lace Monitor that was left for dead in a suburban backyard.
Thanks to Kristy’s perseverance, our native friend has been brought back from the brink. There is still a long way to go yet but progress has been good and Kristy says that this little lizard has a very healthy appetite!
Way to go Kristy!
Moving house is always a hassle, especially when it involves a 4.3m saltwater crocodile! Recently one of our larger crocs, Zont had to be moved to a new enclosure whilst the old one is being renovated. It took 10 staff, a quad bike, lots of ropes, strength and perseverance! The animal’s welfare is always paramount during the capture and relocation process. Zont weighs approximately 400kgs so the whole process took great team effort. Well done and congratulations to all the staff involved.
Cairns Tropical Zoo plays and integral part in life-saving research conducted by James Cook University (JCU). Each month, dedicated reptile keepers “milk” a variety of venomous species including taipans, brown snakes, black snakes and death adders.
The venom is passed on to JCU so that they can use it for a broad range of research work including blood clotting, studying the venom’s effect on the human heart and muscle cells, developing potential medicines and even learning more about the physiology of snakes!
Alex Mitchell (Featured in the photos below) is a very dedicated and passionate reptile keeper at the zoo. He maintains that there are a lot of benefits from these animals that people aren’t aware of.
During the “milking” process, each snake is encouraged to bite down on the rubber lid of a small vial while its head is massaged to yield small quantities of venom.