Christmas is a special time of year for the animals at Alexandra Park Zoo as they unwrap their Christmas gifts that were specially-made to suit their behavioural traits.
There was a gift for each animal, from the inquisitive cockies to laidback dingoes, in the lead up to Christmas Day.
Christmas-themed papier-mâché balls, Christmas-wrapped boxes, red and green gum nuts, and even special ice blocks were gifted to the animals at Alexandra Park Zoo to help them celebrate the festive season.
Merry Christmas from the Zoo Keepers
Zoo Keeper Laura Billings said the Christmas gifts were part of the animal’s enrichment program and it was nice to make sure no one missed out on the special time of year.
“George the cockatoo, that everyone knows as he has been with us since 1999, loved unwrapping the cardboard boxes,” Laura said.
“He was really excited!
“The animals were also given ice blocks wrapped in plants to help cool them down.
“And we painted their normal papier-mache balls, used in the enrichment program, in Christmas theme with nontoxic paint.”
Laura has been a zoo keeper at Alexandra Park Zoo for three years and said making Christmas special for the animals was important, and it was nice to see them interact differently for the once a year occasion.
“The animals are like my second family and it’s nice to celebrate Christmas with them also,” Laura said.
“On Christmas Day even though the Zoo is closed I come in the morning and feed, water and cool them down for the day.”
Laura said she didn’t mind being away from her human family for a few hours on Christmas morning.
“We spend all year with the animals, and it would be strange not to see them on Christmas Day,” she said.
“I enjoy coming in and wishing all the animals a Merry Christmas!”
Feeding and snake handling hours
Over the Summer school holidays, the community is invited to go along to Alexandra Park Zoo and watch the Spotted-tail Quoll feeding at 10:30am and the Cotton-top Tamarins just after.
And if you are game enough to get up close and personal the zoo keepers and the Coastal Pythons will be roaming around between 11.30 and 11.45am each day.
The Zoo is closed Christmas Day.