Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

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Berkeley Boone
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Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by Berkeley Boone »

If you are just joining us, here is the trip report for Part 1, Sydney: ... =2&t=22237
and Part 2, Cairns: ... =2&t=22670

It seems as though there are a bevy of Australian posts this week. Fortuitously, I finished this one just in time to join the mix!
Part 3 is from a day during our first week when we were in Sydney and went to Taronga Zoo. I figured there were enough creatures there that it deserved its own post, especially coming from a zoo background myself.

As I mentioned in the report for Sydney, on one of our rainy day wanderings we met some staff from the Taronga Zoo at the Opera House. They had brought a handful of animals and were set up under the lower level promenade, showing them and talking to passers-by. I casually wandered over and began perusing the animals. They had a Macleay’s Spectre walkingstick, a shingleback skink, a children’s python, an echidna, and a female eastern box turtle on the table.
Image1Shingleback by B Boone, on Flickr
Image94Echidna by B Boone, on Flickr
Image95Aus Walking Stick by B Boone, on Flickr

I said confidently to the lady at the table, ‘You got that box turtle as a confiscation, didn’t you?’ She gave me a surprised smile, and asked how I knew. I told her that was a native where I was from, and that I knew non-natives were not legal here. We introduced ourselves and began talking, and our conversation and in-depth questions began leaning toward zoos, and what I did. When she found out I was involved in the zoo world, she asked us if we had been to see Taronga yet. I told her we had not, but that was on our itinerary for Friday that week. She asked if we would like to see behind the scenes at the zoo, and in particular the education department. I jumped at the chance, and she gave me some instructions and her contact info.

On Friday morning, Leia and I boarded the ferry to take us across the harbour to Taronga. We disembarked the boat, and followed the sidewalk up the gangplank and around to the left, back on dry land. I caught a glimpse of a largish lizard basking on a branch. I stopped and turned around to get a better look. I really hoped that it was a monitor, but I was equally pleased to find that it was instead a water dragon, basking just above the rocks at the water line.
Image10Harbour bridge and dragon by B Boone, on Flickr

We continued up the sidewalk, and found ourselves looking at a rock wall.
Image2Welcome by B Boone, on Flickr

How did we get up? We looked to the left, and there was a doorway that led inside. There we found cable cars and an attendant to get us seated. We boarded and he closed the door, sending us on our way. We cleared the trees at the top of the hill, and realized that we were over the zoo, looking down into it!
Image3Cable Cars by B Boone, on Flickr

Image4How Freakin Cool by B Boone, on Flickr

What a fantastic way to enter the zoo! The cable cars reached their turn around, so we exited and zigzagged down the sidewalk to the entry gates. (Another point I enjoyed here was that you got to see some exhibits- like tree kangaroos! - before you even got in the gate. Unfortunately, the tree kangaroos were still sleeping in that morning.) We got our tickets and walked inside. We studied our maps for a minute to determine where the education department was; we soon found it and walked over. We came to a large metal gate that was partially open, and were debating whether to walk in or not. There was a guy walking towards us wearing a zoo shirt, so I asked him if this was the way to the education area. He surprised us by exclaiming, “You’re the ones we’ve been hearing about! We are so excited to have you! Yes, follow me- I’ll get you where you need to go.” He walked us right up to the offices and told us he’d go retrieve our new acquaintance. She popped out a few moments later and we started a look around. She asked what we would like to see, and we told her whatever she was able to- we were interested in everything!

She walked us through the area where the school groups come, and then through some other gates and into the outdoor animal enclosures. We passed by wooden walls that were not very high. I peeked in and saw bluetongue skinks soaking up the morning sunshine. We came to a gate, and she asked if we wanted to go in. Sure! She opened the gate, then ushered us in and then paused suddenly. There on the ground in front of us was an adult kangaroo that appeared to be dead.
Image5She Is Not Dead by B Boone, on Flickr

Then the kangaroo reached up and scratched its nose with a forepaw. We laughed. This was Penny, and she apparently had just picked up the habit of lying down on the ground in the sun and relaxing, completely sprawled out. When Penny realized she had company, she rolled over and allowed us to come over for a rub.
Image6Penny by B Boone, on Flickr

Penny’s enclosure mates included an emu, several echidnas and a couple of quokkas. Their yard was surrounded by a low fence with areas of shrubs, open mulch beds and grassy lawns in the sun.
Image7Quokka by B Boone, on Flickr

Image8Snufflepugglepus by B Boone, on Flickr

The emu apparently became infatuated with me and followed me closely the entire time we were near the enclosure.
Image9BFF by B Boone, on Flickr

A cotton top tamarin that was in an off-exhibit breeding group. He was very curious about us, and came right up to the glass of the enclosure to watch us.
Image10Cottontop by B Boone, on Flickr

We got to meet a juvenile quokka and a juvenile swamp wallaby in their nursery enclosure. The cuteness overload with these two was almost unbearable, and was -without question- the highlight of the entire trip for Leia. (Notice the emu, sitting on the ground just outside the fence. You can see her body through the gaps in the fence)
Image11Cutie Pies by B Boone, on Flickr

We then got to go and see some more of the off-exhibit animals. Some were program animals, others were not.
Ring tailed Possum
Image12Brushtail by B Boone, on Flickr

Image13This Is My Angry Face by B Boone, on Flickr

Gray Headed Flying Fox
Image14Flying Fox by B Boone, on Flickr

Tawny Frogmouth, that apparently also loved me. And she HATED one of the other male keepers with a passion. Interestingly, he is also tall and dark haired, so it must be something with our mannerisms and behaviors that she cues in on.
Image15Tawny by B Boone, on Flickr

Finally, we got to go into some of the classrooms and the education buildings and see how they were set up. We didn’t get to spend a lot of time in here though because the schools were getting ready to start arriving for their field trips. We did get to see their ‘classroom’ set ups for black headed pythons, womas, blue tongue skinks, and snake necked turtles. It was a little mindboggling for me to experience this and see such ‘exotic’ creatures in a classroom, but then to realize it was comparable to our corn snakes, rat snakes, green anoles and red-eared sliders.
Image16Longneck by B Boone, on Flickr

We followed along for a little while longer, seeing some other exhibits and some other animals. Then we decided that it was time to bid her adieu; we didn’t want to take advantage of her generosity and her time. It turns out that she has a brother and sister-in-law that just moved to New Jersey, so we told her that the invitation was open for her to come see us if she ever came to the States to visit. We promised to return the favor and take her around to some good spots here in the Southeast.

As we walked through the zoo, we noticed how many birds there were, both captive and not! There were aviaries with insanely colorful finches and doves, and then passing us on the sidewalk were fully grown, semi-wild brush turkeys.
Image17Alectura by B Boone, on Flickr

We saw several individuals working on nest mounds in inconspicuous spots, or behind buildings.

We walked through the koala enclosure. This was interesting. It was a spiral walkway up into the trees, and then a platform at canopy level so you could observe the koalas on their turf.
Image18Koala by B Boone, on Flickr

Then we saw a small trailer-like building with a large window in the side. On the top, a sign read ‘Can we save the Corroboree Frog?’ Was it true? Were there Corroboree frogs on the other side of that glass? There were!
Image19Corroboree Frog by B Boone, on Flickr

These little frogs are named for their bright colors that are reminiscent of the paint that Aborigine men would cover their bodies with at celebratory dances, or corroborees. If I remember correctly, there are only about 100 of the southern corroboree frogs in the wild, but in that small quarantined trailer, were over 4 times as many individuals, with the hope of reintroduction one day. Chytrid has really done a number on this species, and it has been said that there is a very good chance they will go extinct in the next 5 to 10 years.

We continued down the sidewalk.

Suddenly, there it was: the Reptile House! I recognized the mural of the crested iguana, diamond python and long neck turtle I had seen previously only in photos. I was finally here- and it most certainly followed through on my wildest dreams about it!
Before we went in though, we looked into some large open air exhibits just outside. There was a large Komodo dragon sitting in the shade, and in another enclosure, a pair of freshwater crocodiles with an above- and below-water view.

Sadly, this big fella passed away back in October of this year. He had lived to about 33 years old.
Image20Vale Tuka by B Boone, on Flickr

Image21Freshies by B Boone, on Flickr

We walked around the open corner into the Reptile House, and let our eyes adjust to the lower light. It was glorious!
Arafura File Snakes, in about the best set up I have ever seen them in:
Image22Acrochordus by B Boone, on Flickr

Image23Acr ara by B Boone, on Flickr

A variety of lizards, snakes and turtles awaited. All displayed in well-done enclosures. We continued down the walkway, looking into the exhibits. Then, I noticed a lizard-like creature staring back at me through the glass.
A Tuatara!
Image24Holy Crap by B Boone, on Flickr

Deep down, I probably should have expected to see this, but it caught me totally off guard. I did not think I would ever get the chance to see one in real life, but yet, here were three of them watching me take pictures of them.
Image25It Is Real by B Boone, on Flickr

Sailfin lizard
Image26Hydrosaurus by B Boone, on Flickr

Several young adult Komodos were in a big enclosure
Image27Heres Lookin At You by B Boone, on Flickr

Then, other creatures I did not ever expect to get to see in real life: Fiji Iguanas, of both types!
Image28Bra fas exhibit by B Boone, on Flickr

Image29Bra fas close by B Boone, on Flickr

Image30Bra vit close by B Boone, on Flickr

Image31Bra vit exhibit by B Boone, on Flickr

The Reptile House layout wound around and took us outside, and then back indoors a time or two. On one of those stops outside, we saw an enclosure that housed some tiger snakes. Unfortunately, I did not see any, but it was quite the exhibit to gaze at!
Image32Outdoor Tiger Snake Exhibit by B Boone, on Flickr

Cunningham’s Skink
Image33Egernia cunninghami by B Boone, on Flickr

Red Barred Dragon
Image34Ctenophorus vadnappa by B Boone, on Flickr

Then back outside again to see a mixed species lizard enclosure (it had more Cunningham’s skinks, Land Mullet, Blue Tongues and maybe some bearded dragons)
Image35Outdoor Lizard Enclosure by B Boone, on Flickr

And finally, a pond containing a variety of long and short neck turtles. Most (all?) of which were rehabilitated animals in various states of recovery that were to be eventually released.
Image36Dogpile by B Boone, on Flickr

Image11Long and Short of It by B Boone, on Flickr

Image37Solo by B Boone, on Flickr

Image38All By Myself by B Boone, on Flickr

After the Reptile House, we wandered throughout the rest of the zoo. Since we were up on top of a hillside, we had fantastic views of the skyline across the water.
Image39Skyline by B Boone, on Flickr

Then we came around a corner and saw the giraffe exhibit. Seems that the planners of the zoo took advantage of the same views we were just lingering over.
Image40Best View In Town by B Boone, on Flickr

Image41Not Photoshopped by B Boone, on Flickr

It was pretty cool to see this big troop of chimpanzees lounging around their grassy exhibit in the sun.
Image42Chimp by B Boone, on Flickr

Image43Chimp and Baby by B Boone, on Flickr

We zig-zagged down the walk, alternating between amazing views out over the water, and observing ungulates back against the rockwork.
Image44Another View by B Boone, on Flickr

Image45Bongo by B Boone, on Flickr

Image46Around Every Turn by B Boone, on Flickr

Image47Stripes by B Boone, on Flickr

Image48Zebra by B Boone, on Flickr

This African Tulip Tree was stunning in person
Image49Spathodea campanulata by B Boone, on Flickr

Image50African Tulip Tree by B Boone, on Flickr

There was a large paddock for Asian elephants. I thought this was interesting- the zoos I have been to (at least here on the east coast) all have African elephants.
Image51Asian by B Boone, on Flickr

Fortuitously, we stopped for lunch and were pleased to find that we did not have be confined inside the café to eat it, so we took our food outside and found a particularly nice bench to eat it on. The elephant yard was directly in front of us, and we enjoyed the gurgle of the waterfall and the ducks playing in it. Moments after we sat down, the elephants began to shuffle over and gather in front of us. Turns out there was a keeper coming down to do a keeper talk, and we had front row seats. Great timing!
These three tigers were nearly carbon copies of each other, all sacked out in the warmth of the afternoon.
Image52Triplets by B Boone, on Flickr

Ibex exhibit
Image53A Long Way To The Top by B Boone, on Flickr

Image54Boss Man by B Boone, on Flickr

Andean condor. This was another first for me. I’ve never gotten to see one of these in real life. These birds are gigantic!
Image55Vul gry by B Boone, on Flickr

There was so much to look at that we were not watching where we were going. We had been told to keep an eye out for the lizards, snakes and brush turkeys that call the zoo grounds home, but not really having anything comparable back in our part of the world, weren’t thinking much about it until we almost stepped on this water dragon enjoying a spot of sunlight on the asphalt.
Image12Phy les in situ by B Boone, on Flickr

I was able to get a few pictures of him before he scooted away because of a commotion a little further up the sidewalk. We turned to look, and here came a couple of keepers leading a brolga (type of crane) down the path directly to us. The brolga just walked along, pausing to inspect the mulch on the sides periodically, until either a treat or a verbal command brought it back to focus. Really cool stuff!
Image57Dance of the Brolga by B Boone, on Flickr

Image58Out for A Walk by B Boone, on Flickr

Red Panda
Image59Ailurus fulgens by B Boone, on Flickr

Little (or Fairy) penguins
Image60Fairy by B Boone, on Flickr

This was a cool exhibit. It was a tall glass window with a view into some deepwater swimming for the birds, but the glass curved up and over our heads, creating a shallow water area where the penguins could swim directly above us, which gave way to a sand and rock beach out in the open air (which the public could see in another separate area, after following the path)
Image61Cool exhibit by B Boone, on Flickr

Australian sea lion
Image62Neophoca by B Boone, on Flickr

The sea lions had a similarly set up exhibit: deepwater viewing with open air haul-outs in another viewing area up above. There were apparently several of them, but most were involved in a presentation topside.

Image63Cassowary by B Boone, on Flickr

The zoo also had a temporary series of exhibits with robotic dinosaurs. Hokey as it may sound, I thought it was really cool. I had always missed getting the opportunity to see the traveling exhibits of these types of dinosaurs when I was growing up, so I thought it was great that they had something like this. The dinosaurs would move, shifting up and down or turning their heads and opening their mouths, and occasionally one would vocalize.

One of my favorite dinosaur species, for no particular reason, Carnotaurus
Image64Carnotaurus by B Boone, on Flickr

Image65Dilophosaurus by B Boone, on Flickr

The dilophosaurus exhibit was quite well done. It was heavily planted, with the dinosaur peeking over the vegetation. There was signage here talking about how Hollywood may have taken some liberties with the whole ‘spitting venom’ thing from Jurassic Park, and while the guest would be reading the sign the Dilophosaurus would turn its head and spray the reader with a stream of water. I watched this for several minutes and it caught nearly every visitor off guard. I chuckled.

The obligatory Tyrannosaurus
Image66Tyrannosaurs by B Boone, on Flickr

Moving back to extant creatures, there were several walk-through exhibits that were modeling various ecosystems. Gorges, open eucalypt woodlands, and many others were featured.
Image67Rockwork by B Boone, on Flickr

Image68Gorge by B Boone, on Flickr

Image69Open Woodland by B Boone, on Flickr

Image70Open Woodland by B Boone, on Flickr

The Tasmanian devils were near here, along with some platypus in a specially designed night house. The devils had a really intriguing exhibit design. It incorporated a roadway into their ‘countryside’ habitat, even including a ‘roadkilled’ wallaby that the devils could ‘scavenge’ some of their food from.
Image71Devil Exhibit by B Boone, on Flickr

Image72Grevillea by B Boone, on Flickr

Moving into one of the other walk-throughs, this brush-tailed rock wallaby was enjoying a siesta.
Image73Lounging by B Boone, on Flickr

Image74Petrogale by B Boone, on Flickr

An exhibit featuring the Wollemi pines was pretty intriguing. Wollemia nobilis has a wild backstory that is too long to detail here, but if you are interested, you should look it up.
Image75Wollemi by B Boone, on Flickr

More echidnas snuffling around. These pudgy, pokey, not-so-little critters were in the bottoms of several other exhibits. We loved seeing them!
Image76Busy Busy Busy by B Boone, on Flickr

Towards the end of the afternoon, we determined that we had to start wrapping our tour up because we had to catch the last ferry back to the mainland. The zoo was open for a while longer, but the ferry was leaving around 4:15 or so. Reluctantly, we had to pick up the pace and unfortunately missed a few exhibits.

On the way out, we stopped to look at the tree kangaroo exhibit that we had kind of breezed past on our way in this morning. This time we could just get a glimpse of a tail, peeking out of some bushes. That was alright- we had seen more than enough spectacular creatures that were new to us this whole day.
Image77Tree Kangaroo by B Boone, on Flickr

If you are still reading, thanks for following along. We had an amazing time in Australia, and I am eagerly awaiting the day that I can go back and check out even more of that land.

And, seeing as how I forgot to include this in either of the other two parts I posted, here is the list of species that we saw. It is mostly complete- there are still a few creatures I am trying to confidently identify.
Sydney area, Jan 25- Feb 1
Visited: Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney Central Business District, Circular Quay, Sydney Harbour, Darling Harbour, Blue Mountains, Featherdale Wildlife Park, King’s Tableland, Echo Point, Jamison Gorge, Three Sisters Overlook, Leura, Luna Park, Taronga Zoo, Tasman Sea, Port Stephens, Birubi Beach

-Australian Ibis, Threskiornis moluccus
-Masked Lapwing, Vanellus miles
-Common (Indian) Myna, Acridotheres tristis
-Rainbow Lorikeet, Trichoglossus moluccanus
-Sulphur Crested Cockatoo, Cacatua galerita
-Australian Magpie, Cracticus tibicen
-Silver Gull, Chroicocephalus novaehollandiae
-Rock Pigeon, Columba livia
-Greater Crested Tern, Thalasseus bergii
-Noisy Minerbird, Manorina melanocephala
-Laughing Kookaburra, Dacelo novaeguineae
-Little Pied Cormorant, Phalacrocorax (Microcarbo) melanoleucos
-Greater Cormorant, Phalacrocorax sulcirostris
-Fruit Dove (sp unknown, heard calling)
-Australian Raven, Corvus coronoides
-Dusky Moorhen, Gallinula tenebrosa
-Wood Duck, Chenonetta jubata
-Pied Currawong, Strepera graculina
-Wedgetailed Eagle, Aquila audax
-Brush Wattlebird, Anthochaera chrysoptera
-Black Cockatoo, Calyptorhynchus banksii
-Willy Wagtail, Rhipidura leucophrys
-Australian Pelican, Pelecanus conspicillatus
-Australian Darter, Anhinga novaehollandiae
-Australian Swiftlet, Aerodramus terraereginae
-Brush Turkey, Alectura lathami
-Magpie-Lark, Grallina cyanoleuca
-Blue-winged Kookaburra, Dacelo leachii (?)
-Pied Cormorant, Phalacrocorax varius
-Brolga, Grus rubicunda
-Common Bronzewing Dove, Phaps chalcoptera

-Bar-Sided Forest Skink, Eulamprus tenuis
-Common Garden Skink, Lampropholis guichenoti
-Grass Skink, Lampropholis delicata
-Yellow-Bellied Water-Skink, Eulamprus heatwolei
-Eastern Water Skink, Eulamprus quoyii
-White’s Skink, Egernia whitii
-Eastern Water Dragon, Physignathus leseurii
-Eastern Bluetongued Skink, Tiliqua scincoides (DOR)
-Lace Monitor, Varanus varius (DOR)

-Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphin, Turciops aduncus
-Eastern Cottontail, Sylvilagus floridanus
-Domestic Cat, Felis catus (DOR)
-Brush-tailed Rock Wallaby, Petrogale penicillata (?) (DOR)
-Black Rat, Rattus rattus
-Wallaroo, Macropus robustus (?) (DOR)
-Eastern Gray Kangaroo, Macropus giganteus (DOR)
-Eastern Pygmy Possum, Cercartetus nanus (DOR)
-Ringtailed Possum, Pseudocheirus peregrinus (DOR)

-St. Andrew’s Cross Spider, Argiope aetherea
-Golden Silk Spider, Nephila edulis
-Redback Spider, Latrodectus hasseltii
-Cicada sp, most likely Black Prince, Psaltoda plaga
-Golden-tailed Spiny Ant, Polyrhachis ammon
-Blue Damselfly, Pseuagrion microcephalum

Cairns area, 2.1-2.5
Visited: Cairns Bay and Esplanade, Green Island, Great Barrier Reef, Mossman, Mossman Gorge, Alexandra Lookout, Daintree River, Daintree Rainforest

-Common (Indian) Myna, Acridotheres tristis
-Magpie Lark, Grallina cyanoleuca
-Peaceful Dove, Geopelia placida
-Masked Lapwing, Vanellus miles
-Shining Flycatcher, Myiagara alecto
-Brahminy Kite, Haliastur indus
-Australian Swiftlet, Aerodramus terraereginae
-Black-Faced Cuckoo-shrike, Coracina novaehollandiae
-Rock Pigeon, Columba livia
-Pied Imperial Pigeon, Ducula bicolor
-Rainbow Lorikeet, Trichoglossus moluccanus
-Zebra Dove, Geopelia striata
-Willy Wagtail, Rhipidura leucophrys
-Bar-Tailed Godwit, Limosa lapponica
-Spotted Dove, Spilopelia chinensis
-Australasian Figbird, Sphecotheres vieilloti
-Silver gull, Chroicocephalus novaehollandiae
-Black Cockatoo, Calyptorhynchus banksii
-Australian Pelican, Pelecanus conspicillatus
-Striated Heron, Butorides striata
-Welcome Swallow, Hirundo neoxena
-Barn owl, Tyto alba
-Bush Stone-Curlew, Burhinus grallarius
-Pacific Reef Egret, Egretta sacra (blue and white phases)
-Eastern Curlew, Numenius madagascariensis
-Black Crowned Night Heron, Nycticorax nycticorax
-Nankeen Night Heron, Nycticorax caledonicus
-White-Breasted Wood Swallow, Artamus leucorynchus
-House Sparrow, Passer domesticus
-Metallic Starling, Aplonis metallica
-White Bellied Sea Eagle, Haliaeetus leucogaster
-Fairy Tern, Sternula nereis (?)
-Eastern Great Egret, Ardea modesta
-Buff Banded Rail, Gallirallus philippensis
-Bar-Shouldered Dove, Geopelia humeralis
-Black Noddy, Anous minutus
-Sulphur Crested Cockatoo, Cacatua galerita
-Dusky Moorhen, Gallinula tenebrosa
-Magpie Goose, Anseranas semipalmata
-Emu, Dromaius novaehollandiae
-Orange Footed Scrubfowl, Megapodius reinwart
-Spangled Drongo, Dicrurus bracteatus

-Common House Gecko, Hemidactylus frenatus
-Green Sea Turtle, Chelonia mydas
-Red-Throated Rainbow-Skink, Carlia rubrigularis
-Closed-Litter Rainbow-Skink, Carlia longipes
-Eastern Striped Skink, Ctenotus robustus
-Scrub Python, Morelia kinghornii
-Yellow-Blotched Forest Skink, Eulamprus tigrinus
-Cane Toad, Bufo marinus (DOR)

-Spectacled Flying Fox, Pteropus conspicillatus
-Agile Wallaby, Macropus agilis
-Eastern Gray Kangaroo, Macropus giganteus (DOR)
-Wallaby sp, thick chestnut colored fur (DOR)

Fish and Invertebrates
-Green Tree Ant, Oecophylla smaragdina
-Black Saddled Toby, Canthigaster valentini
-Banded Archerfish, Toxotes jaculatrix
-Longtom, Family Belonidae
-Diamond-scale Mullet, Liza vaigiensis
-Leopard Flounder, Bothus pantherhines
-Black Cardinalfish, Apogonichthyoides melas
-Yellow Prawn Goby, Cryptocentrus cinctus
-Pistol Shrimp sp.
-Shrimp-Goby sp.
-White-Barred Goby, Amblygobius phalaena
-Goby sp, white, with netlike pattern
-Cylindrical Sandperch, Parapercis cylindrica
-Giant Sea cucumber, Thelenota anax
-Black Sea Cucumber, Stichopus chloronotus
-Moon Wrasse, Thalassoma lunare
-Castelnau’s Wrasse, Dotalabrus aurantiacus (?)
-Surf Parrotfish, Scarus rivulatus
-Parrotfish sp B (?), scales outlined
-Pencil-streaked Rabbitfish, Siganus doliatus
-Dot-and-Dash Goatfish, Parupeneus barberinus
-Onespot Demioiselle, Chrysiptera unimaculata
-Lemon Damsel, Pomacentrus moluccensis
-Big Lip Damsel, Cheiloprion labiatus
-Indo-Pacific Sergeant, Abudefduf vaigiensis (juvenile)
-Black Damsel, Neoglyphidodon melas (juvenile)
-Multispine Damsel, Neoglyphidodon polyacanthus
-Cigar Wrasse, Cheilio inermis
-Jointed Razorfish, Aeoliscus strigatus
-Orange Spider Conch, Lambis crocata
-Giant clam A, purplish shell, razor thin edges
-Giant clam B, bluish purple lips
-Diagonal-banded Sweetlips, Plectorhincus lineatus
-Golden Striped Butterflyfish, Chaetodon aureofasciatus
-Rainford’s Butterflyfish, Chaetodon rainfordi
-Vagabond Butterflyfish, Chaetodon vagabundus
-Ringtail Surgeonfish, Acanthurus blochii
-Orangesocket Surgeonfish, Acanthurus auranticavus
-Blue Streak Cleanerwrasse, Labroides dimidiatus
-Clownfish sp,
-Yellow Mesh Sea Star, Nardoa novacaledoniae
-Round Batfish, Platax orbicularis
-Giant Trevally, Caranx ignobilis
-Spangled Emperor, Lethrinus nebulosus
-Thumbprint Emperor, Lethrinus harak
-Blackspot Snapper, Lutjanus fulviflamma
-Yellowtail Fusilier, Caesio cuning
-Four-Spined Jewel Spider, Gasteracantha quadrispinosa
-Jungle Perch, Kuhlia rupestris
-Freshwater Catfish, Tandanus tandanus
-Ulysses Butterfly, Papilio ulysses

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Re: Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by Nshepard »

Awesome zoo. Loved my visit there in 2003. Same Komodo Dragon is there.

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Re: Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by BillMcGighan »

First Class...
Looks like you made great use of your time.
Sincere thanks for bringing all this back to us with counter-clockwise drains!!!

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Re: Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by chrish »

Great post. Taronga is one of the great zoos in the world, especially for herps. It is also easily accessed by public transportation which is not true of many zoos. I spent many, many a saturday wandering its grounds growing up.

You said you saw both species of Brachylophus....except there are three species now (since 2008). The third one has the coolest name as well, B. bulabula (bula means hello in Fijian).

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Berkeley Boone
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Re: Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by Berkeley Boone »

Thanks guys! Yes, it is definitely an amazing zoo. Probably the best ones I have ever visited.

Many thanks, Bill. I sure tried to! We had a great time, and I am still excited about it every time I look at our pictures. Glad you enjoyed it.

Chris, agreed completely. I was glad that we were able to spend nearly a full day at Taronga. Good point about the three species. I knew of bulabula, but wasn't certain of how accepted it was (didn't realize it was raised in 2008 though) and wasn't able to find much about how to discern it from fasciata. But thank you for the correction and information! Filed away, now!


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Re: Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by Kfen »

That zoo looks amazing!
Berkeley Boone wrote:

Then, other creatures I did not ever expect to get to see in real life: Fiji Iguanas, of both types!
In case you wanted to see Fiji iguanas again without going back to Australia, or Fiji, they have them at the National Zoo in DC.

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Re: Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by Barry R »

great croc exhibit

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Berkeley Boone
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Re: Trip To Australia, Part 3: Taronga Zoo

Post by Berkeley Boone »

Yes, Kfen, it was a seriously good zoo! It gave me lots of good ideas.....
Good to know about the Brachylophus at the National Zoo. I've never been up there, I'll have to go check it out. I think they also have them (and breed them) at the San Diego Zoo.

I was pretty impressed with that croc exhibit too, Barry.

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