Tasmania - are Australia specific animals seen there?

Old Jan 23, 18, 11:45 am
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Tasmania - are Australia specific animals seen there?

Two of us have been to Australia before and seen the main types of animals specific to the Australian continent..

One of us has never been to Australia. We would like to show her these Australian animals - especially the marsupials and the platypus.

However, our Australian itinerary outside of Tasmania may be very limited (two nights; one day - in Sydney - with relatives - chances are that she will not be able to go to the zoo; Two nights and one day in Cairns - for the great barrier reef tour).

So can she see such animals in Tasmania, or would we have to modify our itinerary to see such animals?
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Old Jan 23, 18, 9:27 pm
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Tasmanian devils should be easily visible You may have to travel a bit to get to a zoo, for example near Lauceston is Tasmania Zoo - Riverside, TAS - Animals
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Old Jan 23, 18, 9:55 pm
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Many animals are nocturnal, so a zoo is how to guarantee a sighting. There are plenty of wildlife tours (both day and night) with experienced guides that would be more fun than a zoo, although no guarantee of sightings. There are also specialist parks, e.g. Trowunna Wildlife Park, which might be an option.

Also the Tasmanian Devil population in Tasmania has suffered badly because of a strange 'cancer-like' virus and many have been captured and taken to the Mainland for breeding and isolation from the virus.

I would love to see quolls in the wild. It's on my bucket list.
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Old Jan 23, 18, 11:05 pm
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Most Australians have never seen a Platypus in the wild.... so yes, a zoo is the go there... As it is for many other smaller native animals...

Id be surprised if you didn't see Eastern Grey Kangaroos just while driving outside of towns.... that's the second largest species and they can get quite large....so that should tick the "Kangaroo" box nicely...
There are only three species of snake in Tasmania...and they are all venomous....so.......seriously... don't be concerned by the apparent number of dangerous animals.... be sensible yes... but no need to worry unduly....
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Old Jan 24, 18, 12:24 am
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TL;DR Yes you can see most iconic Aussie animals in Tas (except koala, emu or crocs) and I would argue you can see those wildlife much more easily in Tas than other parts of Aus.

There aren't really zoos in Tas but there are lots of wildlife sanctuaries, rescue and rehab centres, and breeding centres for the Devils who also house habituated Aussie and specifically native Tassie fauna. There is a place on the north coast that breeds echidna and platypus. I highly recommend trying to see the native wildlife in the wild and then visit Bonorong near Hobart if you haven't ticked off your list by the end of your hols, both for their up close experience with roos and devils and because they have an excellent ethos and wildlife rescue program.

You will see Bennett's wallabies and pademelon throughout Tas if you stay anywhere in a bush setting or small town, or if you drive at night (so please drive slowly). You can see wallabies and pademelons in the day in the bush, for example around kunanyi-Mt Wellington lower slopes by Cascade or Fern Tree or walking aroung Freycinet. There are many smaller bouncy marsupials that I have only seen at night, like potaroos, bettongs and bandicoots. You should see brush tailed possums if outside at night too, especially in camp sites.

Eastern grey kangaroos tend towards the north, east coast or central grasslands. Mobs can be seen (and got close to) at narawntapu or wukalina-Mt William. They also occur in smaller numbers all along the east coast highway and Maria Island.

Platypus are surprisingly common in Tas but shy. They have been recorded in Hobart Rivulet within 1 km of the city centre! But your best chances are Mersey River at Latrobe (warrawe forest), Tyenna River at Mt Field to Westerway, or an accommodation with a dam or river with residents (they are territorial). Platypus females are easier to see in summer when they will feed through the day to ensure they can feed their young. Be very quiet and still.

There are particular accommodations that feed wild devils and quolls. Devils may also be seen throughout Tas on rural roads at night but they don't appear close to roads that often. The best bet for quolls seems to be Mt Field or the north-west forests, but I've not seen a wild one in 2 years of living here.

I've seen most echidna on the East Coast (keep an eye out for them on the highways and slow down!) and on Maria Island.

Wombats are common on Maria Island and in many places with grasslands, even on the top of mointains like Mt Field and around Cradle Mountain.

There are also plenty of cockatoos and parrots, eagles, whales (in the right season) and penguins (Bicheno, Low Head or Bruny Neck are best) as well as snakes! With a bit of bush walking (of which there is plenty) and a few overnights in small town or bush settings, you should see a lot.

We just don't have koala or emu (there used to be a Tas emu but alas that was killed off during european colonisation, like the thylacine).
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Last edited by konagirl2; Jan 24, 18 at 1:03 am
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Old Jan 24, 18, 6:58 pm
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What about seeing some of the iconic Australian animals - including kaolas - at Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary?

Does any wildlife sanctuary or zoo in Tasmania have Australian crocodiles?
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Old Jan 24, 18, 7:11 pm
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Originally Posted by FlyerGoldII View Post
Does any wildlife sanctuary or zoo in Tasmania have Australian crocodiles?
Tassie would be too cold for croc's
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Old Jan 24, 18, 8:10 pm
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Originally Posted by FlyerGoldII View Post
What about seeing some of the iconic Australian animals - including kaolas - at Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary?

Does any wildlife sanctuary or zoo in Tasmania have Australian crocodiles?
Yes there are resident "ambassador" animals at Bonorong; roos, koalas, parrots, echidna, wombats, sugar gliders, quolls, devils, smaller marsupials, snakes. No crocs (too cold) and no platypus (there is a specialist centre in the north). See their website. The zoo at Launceston might have crocs, but you can go to a zoo anywhere.

Last edited by konagirl2; Jan 24, 18 at 8:17 pm
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Old Jan 24, 18, 8:56 pm
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The drop-bear sanctuary near Devonport is worth a detour. Be sure to wear protective head-gear during mating season - they are both short-sighted and nimble, a dangerous combination.
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Old Jan 24, 18, 11:43 pm
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More importantly, how do you prepare platypus? A nice stew perhaps? As a contrast in a risotto? These are important questions all cooks face, but don't worry, there are answers available. Wherever you stay in Australia, be sure to ask at restaurants about their "local flavours" and try something unique.
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Old Jan 24, 18, 11:45 pm
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Originally Posted by JamesBigglesworth View Post
More importantly, how do you prepare platypus? A nice stew perhaps? As a contrast in a risotto? These are important questions all cooks face, but don't worry, there are answers available. Wherever you stay in Australia, be sure to ask at restaurants about their "local flavours" and try something unique.
Iím not convinced that youíre taking this discussion seriously.
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Old Jan 28, 18, 2:50 am
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Easy place to see platypus is the lake in the middle of Penguin on the north coast. Or the salmon ponds at New Norfolk. We may have been lucky but both spotted in the middle of the day (and two platypi(?) in the lake in Penguin).

We revisited Tassie in November and three times in two weeks had to slam on the anchors to avoid echidnas crossing the road.

My top tip for nocturnal animals is Bruny Island. We try not to drive at night to avoid the carnage but got caught out. I very nearly got out of the car to shoo away suicidal local furry things (including quolls) on the road to Barnes Bay after you turn off the road from the ferry. Very stressful and slow journey but we ticked off almost everything there was to see.

Lots of wombats in the fields north of Port Sorell and on Maria Island.

Not seen a devil in the wild though.
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Old Jan 31, 18, 1:28 pm
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Originally Posted by number_6 View Post
Tasmanian devils should be easily visible
Don't get people's hopes up. Highly unlikely to be seen in the wild, and then, only at night.
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