Countdown is on to meet the meerkats

Published on 25 November 2020


They may be less than 30cm tall, but the newest members of the Rockhampton Zoo family are set to take the visiting experience to new heights.

The Zoo is now home to four adorable meerkats, who arrived from Symbio Wildlife Park in New South Wales last Thursday.

Parks Councillor Cherie Rutherford said she is thrilled to announce the mob are currently settling into their new home and are expected to be in public view from the start of December. 

“We are delighted to have the long awaited meerkats here at Rockhampton Zoo and I am very happy to report that they are settling into their new home and doing really well,” Cr Rutherford said.

“The mob is made up of four females and includes a mother, an adult daughter, as well as two pups.

“The mother’s name is Aya and she is 5 and a half years old, the eldest daughter is Sabari, who is 15 months, and the two pups – Keeya and Mahlia are both three and a half months.”

“Our keepers have said they have been having a great time exploring their new environment.

“There’s the saying that a messy meerkat is a happy meerkat and that is very much the case here. They have been busy ferreting and digging and often have dirt and mess all over their faces.”

The exhibit, which is located near the chimp enclosure and the dome aviary, has been carefully constructed to replicate their natural habitat.

“Given that meerkats are desert dwellers, their enclosure is very open, sandy and rocky,” Cr Rutherford said.

“Their home comes complete with a night house, lots of nooks and crannies to tunnel in, and high sentry posts like termite mounds. We also have heat lamps for when nights drop below 18 degrees.”

Cr Rutherford said it’s hoped that zoo-goers will be able to see the meerkats from early December.

“We are hoping they will be completely settled within a couple of weeks.

“What a fantastic way to celebrate the beginning of the school holidays.  I know that so many are going to absolutely adore these beautiful creatures.

“We will keep the community updated on the official opening date of the enclosure.”

The Zoo can be visited between 10am and 4pm each day. Entry is free.

The Rockhampton Zoo is owned and operated by Rockhampton Regional Council.