TEN NEW AUSSIES IN THE YEAR OF THE HORSE24-Jan-2014
The Darling Downs Zoo has just completed the most ambitious project in it's short history. In February 2008, six long years ago, we started making arrangements to bring a group of Zebras to Australia. We built a quarantine station at the zoo and acquired a group of suitable animals in the United States. Then the project was halted for two years by the advent of Equine Influenza and the subsequent need for the Government to develop new biosecurity protocols. Our Zebras were dispersed to American facilities and we prepared to start all over again.
For the last two years we have been working with the Government to achieve compliance with their new protocols, both here in Australia as well as in the USA.
Back in October we started acquiring animals again in the US and sent a crew of professional animal people to Texas to commence conditioning the Zebras for their quarantine testing and subsequent flight to this country. Eventually we acquired ten beautiful young animals that are not related to each other or to any Zebras in Australia. Our team virtually lived with the animals for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. After a series of dramas and delays our Zebras left Dallas Fort Worth airport for the long trip to Australia. During transhipment in Singapore the staff at the Changi Airport animal facility commented that they had never had such calm Zebras in their facility. Well done team!
The shipment finally arrived in Queensland in 40C+ heat and were quickly whisked into our quarantine facility where they were regularly sprayed to keep them cool by their dedicate carer. In their first couple of days in Australia they have had to contend with extreme heat, a grass fire on a neighbouring property, a massive hail storm and torrential rain. See our Facebook page for pictures of these beautiful animals.