Alexandra Park Zoo was a popular place to be in 2022 with more than 181,424 visitors walking through the gates to meet the animals and chat to local zookeepers.
It's a 124 per cent increase from 2021, which saw 80,983 visitors attend the attraction.
The Bundaberg Regional Council zoo is home to more than 20 species, including a spotted-tailed quoll, two cotton-top tamarin monkeys and favourite dingo siblings Lowanna and Kupali, as well as frogs, snakes and a range of birds.
Last year proved to be a successful time for zoo staff, who undertook plenty of diverse training and research to ensure animal welfare and conservation efforts were met.
Alexandra Park Zoo Group Supervisor Kate Beskeen said record keeping had been a vital part of last year's progress and had resulted in being able to share animal data internationally to assist with species management.
“In 2022 our freshwater turtle data contributed was selected to assist in a Conservation Science Alliance study focusing on ageing in tortoises and turtles,” she said.
“The report was published in the journal, Science, and showed that turtles can reduce their rate of ageing when living conditions are improved.
“We also entered into a partnership with the Quoll Seekers Network (QSN), a non-government body that monitors and maps quoll populations and delivers educational programs.
“Images of our quoll Crunchy are being used across QSN media platforms to help raise awareness of the threats that quolls face from habitat loss and invasive species.
“Zoo staff will be involved in future training with QSN, undertaking surveys and supporting scientific research.”
Kate said there was plenty to celebrate about 2022.
“Most notably, Alexandra Park Zoo received Zoo and Aquarium Association (ZAA) Accreditation demonstrating its ongoing commitment to positive animal welfare,” she said.
“ZAA accredited zoos operate to their highest levels and are assessed every three years.”
Tours and events provided to the community
Alexandra Park Zoo staff delivered 19 guided tours in 2022, providing memorable encounters and learning opportunities for more than 500 people.
A range of events were also held throughout the year to get the community involved.
- Breakfast at the Zoo – a Milbi Festival event, zookeepers provided free guided tours of the zoo. Community donations raised throughout the Milbi Festival event for WYLD Projects Indigenous Corporation will contribute to the ongoing conservation of the critically endangered white-throated snapping turtle.
- Fundraising for the endangered Fatu Hiva Monarch bird in French Polynesia was held as part of the annual fundraiser by the Australasian Society of Zookeeping (ASZK).
- Keeper talks held during the school holidays provided opportunities for the community to learn more about the animals, watch the animals being fed and ask questions.
Kate said looking ahead, zoo staff were keen to see what 2023 would bring.
“Alexandra Park Zoo was established in 1911 and is one of Queensland’s oldest continuously running zoological facilities,” she said.
“We look forward to continuing to welcome visitors to our zoo, expanding our animal habitats and inspiring others to contribute to wildlife conservation.”
About Alexandra Park Zoo
Alexandra Park Zoo is situated at 29 Quay Street.
The zoo is open from Wednesday to Sunday 9.30 am to 4.30 pm.
During the school holidays the zoo is open seven days a week from Saturday 10 December 2022 through to and including Sunday 22 January 2023.
Entry is free.
Find out more here.
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