27 July 2012

feeding the lions at Taronga Western Plains Zoo

Greetings all,
Before we even left for Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo, my husband declared he was going to feed the lions.  When we arrived at the zoo, we immediately booked him for the afternoon lion feeding, then toured the zoo on bikes.  We saw the lions in their enclosure first, they were very affectionate to say the least!!  I actually felt like voyeur watching them, worse, photographing them.   
 Feeding the lions (or tigers in the morning) is for the over 15s & costs $59, i was encouraged to have lunch in the cafe with the children while my husband went behind the scenes.  Handsome soldier returned, almost speechless & in awe of these incredible animals.
 Just for scale, my husband is over 6' tall & the lion is standing about 5' back from the fence!!
 They have INCREDIBLE reach & the keepers assure you, they are still very much wild animals, if you went in to their enclosure, they would still try to kill you.  I didn't doubt that as we got up very close to them on the Zoofari tour (part of the overnight lodge stay.)
 Look at her pretty face, so calm & gentle.
 Handsome soldier was the only person in the afternoon feeding group so he let a novice keeper have a turn too.  While my husband was watching her feed the lion, the lioness put her paw up next to his face.  Look at those claws & the fluff sticking through the fence!!
This is my favourite shot, look at that magnificent face!!
This was the absolute highlight of the whole zoo for my husband, an adrenalin rush & . . . complimentary face full of lion breath!!  He would do this again in a heartbeat.  Actually i would have him do both lions & tigers next time & go along to take the photos (the keeper taking the shots didn't zoom in, i would have taken 100 shots!!)  Value for money??  To see the look oh my husband's face afterwards, priceless!!  
Gather round the children folks & show them these amazing animals.  Stay tuned for the next instalment - the Zoofari lodge overnight stay & a family zoo pass giveaway!!  Love Posie

16 comments:

TexWisGirl said...

how cool for him! sounds like he was thrilled to be able to do it! :)

The Accidental Housewife said...

Oh WOW! That's a massive paw and head, right there. I so glad he enjoyed it, and how amazing to be the only one in the session! Even without your mad photog skillz, the photos are pretty amazing.

Those smooching lions are gorgeous! I've never seen that before, the Canberra lions are loners and usually hang out at opposite ends of the enclosure. It's nice to see love, no matter what species. (but not, you know *too much* love. Ahem.)

I've had my eye on a Dubbo trip for ages, but it's a bit expensive for us this year - too many uni fees! I'll be back to try for the pass for sure. I may have squealed when I read that this morning... Thanks for the opportunity!

nook. said...

ohmygoodness! that is amazing! i don't doubt your hubby was speechless. i sure would be! thanks so much for sharing! xo

Jan-Maree said...

Oh.....how ....cool!!!! I think I have to go back there! I am so jealous!!!!

Bree said...

We did a similar tour at the Werribee zoo outside Melbourne. I was about 6 months pregnant with Guy and the keepers were so worried I was going to drop my bundle during the feeding! And I tell you when that big lion fixed me with his steely glare through the fence I very nearly did!!! The most awesome beasts ever. Every city we visit we go to the zoo.

Cherry Blossom said...

They are so big. I don't think I would ever be able to feed them. : ) love Possum

Mum on the Run said...

Brilliant - but terrifying!!
:-) xx

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Jane said...

Just astonishing, Jennie. Talk about a brave husband! J x

Mama of 2 boys said...

Oh I LOVE the lions Posie. What an incredible experience to actually feed them! Fantastic photos of your lovely experience xo

Posie Patchwork said...

AWESOME.

Posie Patchwork said...

AWESOME.

Jules said...

It is a magic place and think only a hop step and a jump from me!!!!!
Did you get to feed the giraffes? xx

Gina said...

What an amazing experience!

Jane said...

Thanks so much for linking this up with the POTMC, Jennie - it's such a ripper! J x

Liene said...

I've never heard of a similar program here in the US - I'll have to look into it, this sounds like an awesome experience! Visiting from PotMC, bisous, Femme au Foyer