Rocky zoo to welcome mob of new African animals

ROCKHAMPTON Zoo is soon to be the next Meerkat Manor.

Rockhampton Regional Council exclusively revealed to The Morning Bulletin it was beginning works on a new enclosure which would be home to a mob of meerkats.

Parks Portfolio Councillor Cherie Rutherford said zoo staff had been working over the past 12 months on a new acquisition for the zoo.

“I am absolutely thrilled to announce today that the animals relocating to Rocky are a cheeky mob of meerkats,” Cr Rutherford said.

“Once the enclosure is complete we’ll be looking to welcome a small non-breeding group of around six meerkats.

“I understand that meerkats can have some complex social dynamics and are no strangers to family drama – so if you’re a reality TV lover be prepared to head to the zoo for your new favourite show.”

ESCAPE: Meerkats standing in field, Botswana. Picture: Getty
ESCAPE: Meerkats standing in field, Botswana. Picture: Getty

Cr Rutherford confirmed the contract to build the enclosure, as well as a new perimeter fence for the Zoo, was now out to tender.

“As always we will be using our longstanding Local Preference Policy as part of the tender award process, meaning extra weighting is given to local businesses in the scoring process,” she said.

The home will have glass viewing panels for easy viewing, a night house, lots of nooks and crannies to tunnel in, and a couple of high sentry posts.

As meerkats are desert dwellers the enclosure will be open, sandy, and rocky.

There will also be heat lamps for when nights drop below 18 degrees.

The perimeter fencing and access gates around the zoo will also be upgraded.

At this stage there is no exact date for when the new residents will arrive.

“The zoo holds such a special place in our community and is a wonderful drawcard for tourists,” Cr Rutherford said.

“These delightful animals will only add to how incredible our zoo already is, and I feel confident that the community will be just as thrilled as I am to welcome them.”

Rockhampton Zoo is owned and operated by Rockhampton Regional Council.

It is currently closed due to COVID-19 restrictions but there are keeper talks, videos, and regular updates on the Rocky Zoo Facebook page.



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