Getting up close & personal with some new furry friends
It’s not every day you get to be in the company of a celebrity.
Archer, the world’s smallest Koala, is not only the cutest marsupial anyone will ever see but he boasts more than 1,200 likes on Facebook and is always crowded by adoring fans and camera lenses when he’s in his enclosure at Featherdale.
Featherdale Wildlife Park expands over seven acres of land and is home to a large assortment of native Australian animals. The park itself has a unique history dating back to 1953 when the land was first purchased and used as a poultry farm. In 1972 the gates, to a newly established wildlife park, were open to the public.
Fast forward 42 years when myself and the AAT Kings team were lucky enough to spend a day getting up close and personal with all of the colourful creatures that call Featherdale home.
We were treated to cuddles from Archer, one-on-one (or one-on-three) kangaroo feedings and a crocodile feeding – from a very safe distance away. Throughout the experience we were accompanied by knowledgeable carers who answered all of this little native kiwi’s questions. I now know why a wombat has a hard flat bone on their lower backs, why the koala is so lethargic and why the echidna’s hind feet are backwards.
I’ve fed kangaroos a few times but it’s always the highlight of my day. There’s something magical about a huge, powerful animal hopping close to nibble on your hand. Just to give you some scope on the size difference of me and a fully grown kangaroo – I’m 161cm and around 50kg. Featherdale hosts two breeds of kangaroo, The Eastern Grey Kangaroo and The Red Kangaroo. The Grey Kangaroo grows to about 180cm and the males weigh more than 60kg.
We received an ice cream cone full of grass and the kangaroos grab this with their hands. Their little hands! Unfortunately I didn’t get a photo of this because I was too busy covering my mouth and squealing.
Featherdale Wildlife Park is included in four of AAT Kings day tours to the Blue Mountains. It’s a great place for everybody, young and old, to get up close and personal with native Australian wildlife. You will learn about native animals and leave with a new appreciation for nature and the keepers passion for wildlife.
Gordon & his new buddy
We finally pulled ourselves away from little Archer, waved goodbye to the other animals and boarded the AAT Kings coach for a very chatty drive back to Sydney CBD.
Check out our Blue Mountains & Australia Wildlife tour that includes a visit to Featherdale Wildlife Park.