Centenary World Cruise Day 65: Brisbane

We’re in Brisbane today, and our port adventure was a trip to the Brisbane Zoo. I LOVE zoos. Where I grew up, we were within walking distance of the Phoenx Zoo, which, now that I have been to a few zoos, I can see is large and diverse compared to a lot of others.

It its favor, the Brisbane zoo has tons of animals unique to Australia. We saw koalas (smaller than I thought they would be), echidnas, lots of snakes and lizards, the tallest giraffe in the world, and kangaroos and wallabies. We avoided the famous crocodile show because we’re just not comfortable with animals being made to perform for humans. It feels gross.

The enclosure with the kangaroos and wallabies is huge, and rather than having them in cages, they’re just wandering around. You can buy food for them (it’s those pellets you feed rabbits, plus some corn) and then go into the enclosure and feed them.

First, you have to get their attention. Using the same logic that allows your pet to come running when they hear the can opener, we tried rustling the bags, but that didn’t work. Then we tried putting the food into our hands and holding them out to the animals. That got their attention, but they wouldn’t approach us because these are prima donna kangaroos and wallabies. They didn’t come to us – we had to go to them. Finally, we were able to get them to eat out of our hands.

The Pirate fed the kangaroos, and he looked delighted! Their heads are tiny compared to their bodies, and they look almost like deer heads, with the same kind of long noses, big ears, and long eyelashes. At one point, one of the kangaroos was so excited, it grabbed the Pirate’s hand and held it still, afraid he might take it away. A couple of the kangaroos pooped while he was feeding them, as if they needed to make room so they could eat more. They’re all about efficiency.

I fed exactly one wallaby. It ate a whole bunch of pellets out of my hand while I talked to it about how its ear got split, and how the food it was eating kind of looked like that organic cat litter stuff. It would eat, look away, sniff, eat some more. Every time it looked away, I assumed it was done and went to take my hand away, but then it would turn back to me, so I fed it more. Then it started doing a thing that every cat or dog owner in the world recognizes – the horking and jerking that means an animal is about to throw up. Sure enough, a disgusting gruel of corn and pellets oozed to the ground. Then, like any pet I’ve ever owned, it proceeded to eat that, too. I decided I was done feeding things. And now I can cross “make a wallaby barf” off my bucket list.

A lot of the animals (the wombats, the dingoes, the echidnas, the red pandas) were asleep. I came up with three reasons for this:

  1. It was beastly hot and humid, so they were sleeping through the heat of the day.
  2. There is nothing good on daytime television in Australia.
  3. After hours, these animals like to party. They’re resting up from last night’s festivities in preparation for tonight’s.

Those are the only explanations.

Also, I have decided that Australians are both friendly and not quiet about it, so they’re like aggressive Canadians.

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