New webbed feet visitors.....

Some new webbed feet visitors have taken up residence at Wings Wildlife Park.

A family of 2 platypus have taken up residence at Wings Wildlife Park.  Wildlife park manager, Gena Cantwell, stated that there was a small swampy area inside the devil retirement village that just looked messy.  So, when a digger arrived on site, it was decided to neaten up the swamp, clean it out and make the pond slightly larger.

“We were unaware that the platypus family had moved in until a very excited visitor called Mel saw them and filmed them playing in the new pond area” said Mrs Cantwell.

Mrs Cantwell stated that she would have loved to have platypus on display in captivity at the wildlife park, but due to the amount of food they require, it was not possible at the moment.  “Normally, just on dusk, you will see them in the wild in our creeks and streams, if you are lucky. But you have to be at the right spot at the right time,” Mrs Cantwell stated.

Mr Wing was also surprised to hear the platypus were there, but seems to think they may be coming and going through the limestone cave that is near the pond.  He said, “They look fit and healthy, so they must have a good food source close by”.

Platypus enjoy a diet of worms, insects, molluscs and small vertebrates.  A platypus will eat up to 20% of its body weight very day and can spend up to 12 hours searching for food.

“They must have heard how great it is at Wings Wildlife Park and wanted to come and join the party!” one staff member said.

Lilli Cantwell (9 years old) was also excited.  She stated “Platypus are one of two mammals that lay eggs.  They digs holes on the riverbed.  The ears and eyes are closed by a fold of skin when diving, making the platypus both blind and deaf once it goes under the water”.

It’s unknown how long the platypus will stay for, it might have been a one-off visit, but as they can be found in the Leven River, these two may come and go more frequently.  So, keep your eyes peeled when visiting Wings Wildlife Park.

Images supplied by Mel Duniam.