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Negotiating the tracks on wheels

Pram and Stroller Access

Change Table

There is an infant's change table in the wheelchair accessible restroom. Always secure your baby using the safety harness while using the change table.

Accessible and non-accessible parts of the park

Lots of families visit the Animal Loop Walk with strollers and prams, and most do not have a problem.

Big wheel prams are recommended. Small wheeled prams can get around, but it can be a bumpy ride in some areas.

The animal loop is pram accessible subject to the following considerations. The ground is compacted natural earth paths and clearings with some areas of flat rock shelf protruding slightly above the surface.

If you want to go down to the boomerang field, you will need to negotiate around 20 rough and uneven earth and rock steps.

The more remote tracks that go to the Aboriginal Sites are not pram accessible. They are mostly natural bush tracks with steps and are very rugged in places.

Disabled Access

Disability Services Groups

We have lots of groups from various disability services who bring their clients to visit the animals at Walkabout Park.

We always recommend pre-booking with us and letting us know the types of disabilities your clients might have so that the rangers are aware that there are people in the park who may require a little extra attention. We can then assist you where necessary during your visit.

If you pre-alert us that you will be visiting, we admit bona fide carers at no charge. Your adult clients pay the concession entry rate.

If you do not pre-book, carers pay the concession entry rate.

Companion Cards

We do accept Companion Cards. If you have a Companion Card, you are entitled to a concession rate and you can bring one companion who would not pay any entry fee at all.

Access to the Animals - Ranger-led Activities

We run a variety of ranger-led activities throughout the day when you can touch most of the animals. These activities are all included in your gate entry.

Personal Ranger Hire

If you want something more hands-on and personalised just for you, you may prefer to engage a personal ranger to take you behind the scenes with some of the animals so that you can have a really up close and personal experience of them. There is an additional fee. Check out our "Personal Ranger Hire" under the "Visitor Information" tab.

Companion Animals

Guide Dogs, Assistance Dogs and other Companion Animals

Whilst we understand that it is difficult to be without your companion animal when visiting our sanctuary and we wish we could always say "yes", because of human and animal welfare concerns, in many instances we are unable to allow companion animals in our wildlife sanctuary. This is because we are a free-range wildlife sanctuary where guests step into the animals' world. There are no fences to separate the kangaroos, wallabies, emus and other wildlife from our guests. In this context of interacting with wildlife with no barriers, there are three significant areas of risk - for people and animals - arising when our animals encounter even the best trained companion animals.

If you believe your and your companion animal's situation is such that the types of risks described below would not apply to you, or if you would like to discuss anything to do with accessibility with us, you are welcome to contact us. You can phone us on (02) 43751100 or email us at .

Risks

Every visitor entering our sanctuary is given the information they need to safely share this space with the animals with no barriers. Our animals are calm around people, but many of them have a natural fear of other species, or they are territorial and will attack animals that they are not familiar with. The main areas of risk arising from our animals' response to companion animals are:

Firstly, there is the fear response in the kangaroos, emus and other animals. Most of the wildlife at Walkabout Park have an instinctive terror of other species especially, but not only, dogs and cats. Not only would our animals be distressed if they met your companion animal and could injure themselves or have a major stress response (e.g. capture myopathy is a stress response that kills kangaroos), but an animal that is afraid might bite or kick which would put companion animals and their humans, as well as other nearby visitors, at risk of injury.

Secondly, many of our large and powerful animals are territorial e.g. our emus have a natural drive to defend their territory, which increases when they have chicks and during breeding season. Our emus are not aggressive towards humans, but they will chase and kick emus and other animals to clear their territory. The other animals resident in our sanctuary are used to this and will give way to a defensive emu. However, a companion animal is trained to stay with its human, so the companion animal may be a target for a defensive emu, putting the animal and their human in harm's way.

Thirdly, whilst companion animals are vaccinated against a range of diseases, there are diseases that they are not vaccinated against. They may carry a disease and not become ill and not have symptoms, but transmit the disease to other species that may become ill e.g. healthy cats can carry toxoplasmosis which kills marsupial animals. Likewise, there are diseases that companion animals are not vaccinated against that they can catch from other species. Disease transmission from one species to another, although uncommon, is possible. There is significant risk, for our animals and yours, of having our animals share space with companion animals, especially as our animals and our guests all share the same space without barriers.

Wheelchairs

Ramps, doors and paths

There is a tarred path and a ramp to the visitor centre from the carpark. It is an uphill push. There are bumps and seams in the ground, although most people traverse these ok.

There are double doors from teh Visitor Centre into the park. If they are not open when you arrive, please ask any one of our staff to open them for you.

There is a ramp from the Visitor Centre down into the park.

Accessible Toilet / Restroom

There is a wheelchair accessible toilet/restroom on the veranda at the Visitor Centre. This is large enough for a wheelchair and two assistants.

Sometimes guests move tables and chairs on the veranda so they may obstruct your passage. If this happens, please ask any one of our staff to clear the way for you.

No wheelchair access to Aboriginal sites

The more remote tracks that go to the Aboriginal Sites are not wheelchair accessible. They are mostly natural bush tracks with steps and are very rugged in places.

Access to Animal Loop for large-wheel wheelchairs

The Animal Loop is wheelchair accessible subject to the following considerations. The ground is compacted natural earth paths and clearings with some areas of flat rock shelf protruding slightly above the surface. The boomerang field can be reached via the visitor centre, through the carpark and entering via a staff-access side gate. The boomerang field is grassed and the surface can be soft after rain.

Limited access for scooters and small-wheel wheelchairs

Because the animals are so friendly and interested in the visitors, many of them hang around the visitor centre, so you don't have to go far to meet them. People with more severe mobility challenges may choose to relax at the tables at the visitor centre where the emus and kangaroos and little wallabies hang out.

Visitors using small-wheel scooters are advised to not leave the Visitor Centre veranda. Ground beyond this is uneven. Scooters are not stable on this medium and may topple over. If you do want to venture out into the park, please survey the terrain yourself first and make sure that you are able to traverse the ground safely.

Limited Access to Boomerang Field

If you want to go down to the boomerang field, you will need to negotiate around 20 rough and uneven earth and rock steps.

If you let us know, we can arrange for you to bypass the steps by accessing the boomerang field via the carpark (give yourself an extra 10 minutes to get there).

The boomerang field can get quite soggy after rain, so may be difficult to navigate with a wheelchair after wet weather.

 

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