When Alma Park Zoo closed for development in 2014 there were 200 animals needing a new home. Zoo Keeper, Julie Seabrook, took on the mammoth task of re-homing these animals so the species and individual families could be kept together. And that was how Wildlife HQ Zoo was born!
WHQ Zoo is located right next to the Big Pineapple at Woombye on the Sunshine Coast. It’s an open, spacious zoo that is now home to over 400 animals, and 200 different species.
The zoo is broken up into sections according to origins – Australian, Asian, African, South American. And the thing about WHQ Zoo is that they offer 18 different animal encounters. The animals are happy to share their space with you, and you are challenged not to fall in love with each and every one of them!
WHQ Zoo hope that this connection empowers people to make a change and help with conservation. Some of the money raised from the animal encounters go towards protection of Sun Bears as they are currently critically endangered.
Maly is WHQ Zoo’s beautiful Sun Bear. Like many others, she came across from Alma Park Zoo. You can hand-feed Maly, but she is not one of the animal encounters experiences. There are many others to enjoy. From cheeky meerkats, to amazing binturongs (known as bear cats!), adorable lemurs, marmosets, emperor tamarins, and a boa constrictor!
The red panda encounter is especially wonderful. They only tend to want to come out and play during the colder months. So you are guaranteed a pat and a cuddle during winter, and sometimes late spring and early autumn – and this is an experience that many zoos simply do not offer.
All the keepers are WHQ Zoo are passionate and knowledgeable. If you are interested in volunteering you are able to apply via the zoo website.