African plains enclosure
|Location||Monarto, South Australia|
|Land area||1,500 hectares (3,700 acres)|
Monarto Zoological Park (also known as the Monarto Zoo) is a 1,500-hectare (3,700-acre) open range zoo located in South Australia administered by the Royal Zoological Society of South Australia (trading as Zoos SA). It is located at Monarto approximately 70 kilometres (43 mi) from Adelaide's centre.
The zoo features several unique attractions, including the new, up-close and personal Lions 360 walk-in cage experience, a drive-through cheetah habitat, a southern white rhinoceros habitat, and Australia's largest giraffe herd. It is also home to South Australia's largest revegetation project. As of 2015[update] Monarto zoo has achieved one of the most successful giraffe breeding programs in Oceania.
The zoo was created in 1983 on land owned by the state government as a closed-to-the-public, purpose breeding area and endangered species sanctuary. In 1990, a study was undertaken to determine the feasibility of allowing public access to the zoo, and by 1993 it had been developed into a large educational facility, open to the public, with bus and walking tours.
Five major habitat exhibits have been developed, including the Asian steppes, arid north Africa, African plains, and Asian grasslands. The entire zoo is surrounded with vermin-proof fencing to keep the habitat as self-contained as possible. The area is not irrigated, and is populated primarily with native flora to cut down on water consumption and erosion in the semi-arid region. The roads and trails within the zoo are constructed of local materials to keep them low maintenance, and to allow them to be easily re-integrated into the habitat should the need arise. Waste water is recycled, and as much as possible, solar power is used for electric fencing needs.
The zoo is taking part in numerous conservation efforts with endangered species, and has breeding projects for many Australian native species, including the greater bilby, the tammar wallaby, the yellow-footed rock-wallaby, and the eastern barred bandicoot, as well as many exotic species, including the scimitar oryx, Przewalski's horse, American bison, the addax, Barbary sheep, South African cheetah, southern white rhinoceros, black rhinoceros and the African wild dog. In 2006, the zoo began a breeding program for Tasmanian devils which are free of facial tumour disease.
- "Zoos South Australia: Adelaide & Monarto Zoo". Retrieved 1 April 2016.
Monarto Zoo is the largest open-range zoo in the world spanning more than 1,500 hectares and home to more than 500 animals and 50 species.
- "Terms and Conditions - Membership". Zoos SA. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
- Tom Fedorowytsch and staff (18 September 2015). "Asali the giraffe arrives at Monarto Zoo after Nullarbor crossing". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
- "Monarto Zoo hopes for more Tasmanian devils breeding program success". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 17 February 2015. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
- Fa, John E.; Stephan M. Funk; Donnamarie O'Connell (2011). Zoo Conservation Biology. Cambridge University Press. p. 232. ISBN 1139498622. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
- Media related to Monarto Zoo at Wikimedia Commons
- Zoos SA. Adelaide Zoo and Monarto Zoo. Australian Panda home.