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The Future of Zoos Victoria 2024 (Speculation/Fantasy)

Discussion in 'Australia' started by Zoofan15, 1 Jan 2024.

  1. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    The Future of Zoos Victoria 2024

    Introduction:


    Welcome everyone to the inaugural edition of “The Future of Zoos Victoria.”

    2024 will be a historic year, with the transfer of Melbourne Zoo’s elephant herd to Werribee Open Range Zoo being the main event of the year; and the main source of discussion regarding replacements for Melbourne Zoo’s elephants and the future of the herd at Werribee.

    Due to the strong link between Melbourne Zoo and Werribee Open Range Zoo (this year more than ever), we will have a combined thread for a discussion of all things Zoos Victoria. This will also provide people with an opportunity to discuss Healesville Sanctuary and Kyabram Fauna Park in a speculation context (with neither of these two otherwise warranting their own standalone 2024 threads).

    Resources:

    Zoos Victoria Inventory (2022-2023):

    https://www.zoo.org.au/media/8019/zv-inventory-2022-23.pdf

    2023 Discussion Threads:

    Future of Melbourne Zoo 2023 (Speculation / Fantasy) [Melbourne Zoo]

    Future of Werribee Open Range Zoo (Speculation/Fantasy) [Werribee Open Range Zoo]
     
  2. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Elephant Complex Construction (November 2023)

    upload_2024-1-2_7-37-51.jpeg

    upload_2024-1-2_7-39-32.jpeg

    upload_2024-1-2_7-38-42.jpeg

    Photos taken by @Zoofan15 (30/11/2023)
     
  3. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Vacant Exhibits (Melbourne Zoo)

    Mandrill exhibit:

    upload_2024-1-2_7-46-30.jpeg

    Eastern bongo exhibit:

    upload_2024-1-2_7-48-23.jpeg

    Malayan tapir exhibit:

    upload_2024-1-2_7-49-59.jpeg

    Photos taken by @Zoofan15 (21/11/2023)
     
  4. ReturnOfPaddyRick

    ReturnOfPaddyRick Well-Known Member

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    I visited a couple weeks ago and I heard a hippo import was planned, they certainly want a bull
     
  5. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Do you mean a bull hippopotamus has been identified and pending completion of the IRA, will be coming to Werribee? Or that they’d like to import a bull once the IRA is completed? i.e. How concrete are these plans?

    With two hippopotamus exhibits empty, it’d be nice to see Werribee import a bull and commence breeding. They could potentially breed with two of their cows given the bull could be housed with the third cow (on contraception) if reintegration of the mothers and calves can’t be achieved. Otherwise it makes sense to house them: Primrose and Tulip; Bull; Lotus and calf.
     
  6. Jambo

    Jambo Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    The transfer of Brindabella and Pansy to Monarto was most certainly so they cooluld acquire a bull. Presumably this was Kani (as was apparently planned); but hopefully his death has initiated a bigger push for the IRA to be completed so a bull can be imported from overseas.
     
  7. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Yes, the plan was for Kani to transfer to Werribee for breeding.

    Considering our population is descended from a handful of wild born founders imported into New Zealand and Australia (as opposed to a population founded with imports from established European/North American lines); and there’s been only a limited number of exports (all to Asia), it’ll be interesting to see if North American and Europe have any interest in receiving Australian bred calves in the future. Right now, we’re at the point where we can’t spare a single one; but one bulls are imported a breeding recommences, it won’t take long to generate a surplus.
     
  8. ReturnOfPaddyRick

    ReturnOfPaddyRick Well-Known Member

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    Just plans for a bull is what I can confirm, I’m not sure if they’ve identified one
     
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  9. Jambo

    Jambo Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Interesting to hear. Would obviously have to be from outside of the region, so I doubt they would’ve identified one as of yet (assuming the IRA is still in the works).

    Hopefully this is just in reference to acquiring a bull once the IRA is completed; hopefully soon!
     
  10. The Sleepy Hippo

    The Sleepy Hippo Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: 2 Jan 2024
  11. Jambo

    Jambo Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    I don’t believe they are new plants imo.
     
  12. The Sleepy Hippo

    The Sleepy Hippo Well-Known Member

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    I could be wrong but I don't remember the palms in there.
     
  13. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    With the timeline for the completion of the IRA being out of the zoo’s hands, it might not even be possible to request a bull until there’s confirmation of when we can receive one. It’ll be interesting to see what countries the IRA covers. Previous ungulate IRA’s have covered a wealth of European countries, North America and Singapore, so they’re all likely assumptions. An import from Europe seems most likely imo.
     
  14. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    A volunteer told me the plan is for Southern cassowary to return to this exhibit and that they’d been planting it up.

    Like many of us, I share the opinion this exhibit would be better off housing a Congo species to compliment the adjacent Pygmy hippopotamus. Black and white colobus would be perfect if they had a larger troop (to improve chances of seeing them).

    Alternatively, with the Hippopotamus IRA approaching, they could have completed redeveloped the space to become the region’s breeding hub for Pygmy hippopotamus.
     
  15. ReturnOfPaddyRick

    ReturnOfPaddyRick Well-Known Member

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    A mixed exhibit encompassing the Pygmy hippo and that exhibit would be ideal, with colobus as the second species
     
  16. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    That would be good to see. They ideally need a larger troop of colobus, but options within the region are limited due to the small number of founders. Some imports of additional females would be ideal and assist in growing a larger troop.

    In the past, colobus replacing Vervet monkey at Werribee has been speculated, but Vervet monkey are such a great fit for Werribee. The only African monkey as well suited to their exhibit would be Patas monkey (long since phased out by the region).
     
  17. ReturnOfPaddyRick

    ReturnOfPaddyRick Well-Known Member

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    De Brazza’s are another option id think, either for Werribee or MZ, especially with the reintroduction to the region
     
  18. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    De Brazza’s are a Central African species and would certainly be great for Melbourne Zoo.

    With Auckland, Wellington, Adelaide and Perth phasing out Hamadryas baboon, I’ll be interested to see if Melbourne Zoo follows suit and transfers their troop to Werribee. Last year, we all discussed the possibility of phasing out Western lowland gorilla at Werribee and replacing them with a large Hamadryas baboon troop.

    As a side note: Chacma baboon were common across the region’s zoos (and circuses) throughout the 20th century; but the Hamadryas baboon found favour amongst city zoos in recent decades due to their smaller size. It sure would be great to see what the open range zoos could do with Chamca baboon in this day and age.
     
  19. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    It seems like most, if not all of this, are in agreement Tasmanian devil should be removed from the Carnivores precinct.

    What replacement species would we like to see?

    I’d like to see Clouded leopard, but fear the close proximity of the tiger exhibit would make the reclusive cat even more of a recluse. I’d therefore house Nepalese red panda in the Carnivores precinct (providing the visitors with an interesting lesson on why red pandas are classed as carnivores); and redevelop their exhibits for Clouded leopard. It’s a relatively quiet area of the zoo and a good distance away from apex predators.
     
  20. Jambo

    Jambo Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    I'd love to Komodo Dragons there, and I feel like the current Tasmanian Devil enclosures of decent size for Komodo Dragons.

    Clouded Leopards could potentially find a place in the Trail of the elephants once the elephants leave, or they could even make use of the area next to the Red Pandas which I agree is a nice, secluded section of the zoo for them.