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Cooberrie is back on track and ready for a ripper weekend

ooberrie Park wildlife keeper Kieron Smedley is ready for a ripper reopening weekend this weekend.
ooberrie Park wildlife keeper Kieron Smedley is ready for a ripper reopening weekend this weekend. Austin King

THINGS are shaping up for a ripper weekend at what was once a "lush" sanctuary for animals on the Capricorn Coast.

It still is a place of unreal beauty, but Cooberrie Park is still going through the $200,000 clean-up trauma, Cyclone Marcia caused last month.

Volunteers, cash donations and clean-up assistance have been pouring in left, right and centre for the Smedleys, who own Cooberrie Park Wildlife Sanctuary near Yeppoon.

The Capricorn Coast Mirror visited the park to see how progress for an Easter break opening was going.

Despite the elephant in the park (the debris), the spirits of the animal keepers, volunteers and indeed the Smedleys was extremely high.

Even the animals looked as though they were ready to take on visitors.

Snake handler and keeper Grant Smedley, who is part of the family, said the wombat enclosure (destroyed by the cyclone) was under construction.

The enclosure's resident wombat, "Flo", was watching all the rebuilding action at her home from a nearby safe house.

Most of the animals at the sanctuary are fine.

Grant said before the cyclone, all the animals had enough feed for days.

What were once mile-high skyscrapers of the forested sanctuary at Cooberrie Park are now mangled heaps of dead kindling.

Mile-high piles of native and deciduous trees, some of which camouflaged the enclosures of the animals at the park, have been cleared, but are waiting to be destroyed.

The Smedleys want to thank all the people, organisations, businesses and others who helped with the recovery effort.

You can follow Cooberrie Park's progress on its Facebook page Cooberrie Park Wildlife Sanctuary.

If you would like to make a donation, the park's BSB number is 084992; account number is 864724268.

You can also make donations at the park's Go Fund Me website. Simply search for Cooberrie Park.

Cooberrie Park takes care of lots of sick, injured and orphaned wildlife from across the region each year.

The park does not receive any Government funding and relies on donations.

Topics:  animals cooberrie park wildlife sanctuary cyclone marcia easter



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