This time, I loved Currumbin. Really loved it. Last visit, we had our airport departure and check in times hanging over us. We had to rush through all exhibits and skip the shows.
This time, we got to experience the free flight bird show. We got to feed the lorikeets. We got to spend as long as we wanted photographing the various animals and observing them in a relaxed environment.
It turned out to be one of the best days we spent on our trip.
One of the highlights for Glenn was these little lizards floating around everywhere. It didn’t matter how many we saw, he had to photograph every single one. He was pretty impressed with his camera – especially once I told him that those red shots show you where it is focusing.
Glenn had the exact same idea that I had the previous time – head straight to the koala enclosure and get some close up pictures. They are incredibly photogenic. They were just getting fed and Glenn got a fantastic series of shots of this koala yawning. Heck, even the guys at Australia.com on Facebook thought so! They posted the picture and it received over 10k shares and 80k likes. It’s Glenns first real taste of viral success.
A lot of people commented that it looks like Yoda and they are right.
Glenn didn’t get as much out of the free flight aviary as I did. I saw this bird lying on the ground, which I didn’t photograph last time.
He did have a bird poop on his shirt, though. The mess was spread on both the front and back of his shirt. We took a photo of the offending bird for good measure. Unfortunately for Glenn, this wasn’t the last he’d, er, feel from his birdy friends.
Free flight bird show
I really wanted to see this the last time I was here. This time, I made sure we were there nice and early so we could snag ourselves a good seat for photography.
This show is worth the price of admission alone. They power through the many bird species (birds of prey, cockatoos, pelican and macaw) and show off the various tricks. I’m a bird nerd and though I knew a lot but I was captivated by a lot of what I saw.
It’s one thing knowing that a buzzard can crack an egg with a rock. It’s a completely different experience watching it happen.
We loved getting a look at the barking owl. It’s eyes were so piercing. Above is an example of the many, many photos that Glenn got.
Of course, the red tailed black cockatoo was a highlight.
It was also awesome watching the other birds of prey. They flew above us and caught food that the handlers were throwing up for them to catch. We also got the chance to pose with a wedge tail eagle. If you ever get the chance to do this, just do it. Don’t think. It’s so humbling to be close to such an intelligent bird and the photographs work out to around $10 each if you get multiple ones. This is so affordable and it all goes back to support the animals.
Kangaroos and Emus
There is an area where you can walk amongst, and feed, the kangaroos and emus. This area is awesome. It may be a bit boring if you’ve done this type of experience before but it offers a lot of great photo opportunities. There were ducks and pigeons amongst the larger animals.
Glenn had a ball while I just sat and watched the animals. I noticed that the dusky moorhens had babies! This didn’t bode well for the kangaroos. Some had wanted to hop past a family but the mother hen got incredibly defensive and jumped up, attacking the kangaroo.
I noticed that particular bird walking with a limp later on, and hoped that she didn’t have any long term injuries – and that the baby would be okay. This is why I have to be careful around animals, I get way too involved.
The lorikeet experience was awesome, although it felt extremely disorganized.
You don’t have to pay to enter the park to take part in it. You just have to make a small donating to the park in return for a small metal bowl of nectar. The birds will fly to you instantly if you have this but be warned: they drink it very quickly.
If you aren’t front and center in this area, the staff will miss you when it comes to refilling your bowl. I got incredibly frustrated at waiting for about 10 minutes while the main presenter was talking about other paid opportunities we could take part in. I understand the need to make money but I know that there would be other people, like myself, who were missing out because the staff were focusing on a small area when it came to refilling
The good thing is that the area settles down after about 15 minutes. Most of the people move away and the lorikeets, and staff, are still there. You will have plenty of time to have those close encounters with the birds, despite the initial frustrations.
The lorikeets also fly off every time a plane flew over.
I had a much better impression of the park this time, primarily because we dedicated an entire day to it and didn’t have to rush around. This shouldn’t be rushed. I recommend checking out the website first to make sure that you have enough time to fit everything in. It’s one of the better wildlife parks that I’ve visited and I’ve gone to a lot.