An­tics never fail to de­light

Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - NEWS -

WITH their cute faces and div­ing prow­ess, it’s easy to see why the seals are crowd pleasers at Taronga Zoo. Marine mam­mals keeper Adri­enna van Gogh shares her in­sights into these en­dear­ing mam­mals. What do you love about work­ing with seals? They are so in­tel­li­gent, cu­ri­ous and are lots of fun. The seals in our show are ex­cel­lent am­bas­sadors for their wild coun­ter­parts and help us en­cour­age our visi­tors to make sus­tain­able seafood choices. What are the dif­fi­cult as­pects of the job? Work­ing in the heavy rain or wind, clean­ing up seal poo and smelling like fish. De­spite this, I still feel like I have the best job in the world. De­scribe a typ­i­cal day in the life of your seals? They re­lax, so­cialise, ex­plore and play with toys. Seals are great prob­lem-solvers so we hide fish in ice blocks and toys. Seal pre­sen­ta­tions pro­vide them with the op­por­tu­nity to work closely with their keep­ers and learn new be­hav­iours. What should visi­tors look for? We have a very ex­cit­ing new ad­di­tion, an Aus­tralian sea lion pup named Max­imus. Do the seals each have dis­tinct per­son­al­i­ties? They are all dif­fer­ent and spe­cial in their own way. We re­ally em­brace all of their unique per­son­al­i­ties and give them all a chance to shine. Michi is one of our Cal­i­for­nian sea lions and he has the loud­est bark and loves to learn new things. Max’s dad, Malie, is very re­laxed and one of his favourite things to do is solve puzzles.

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