Billabong Sanctuary Meerkat Banner V2 01
Billabong Sanctuary Meerkats

Show Times

Open from 9 am till 4 pm every day | Closed Christmas Day

We are proud to offer Australia’s best interactive wildlife experience!

Billabong Sanctuary Rangers are passionate about our amazing native wildlife, and they want to share that passion with you.
They  present dynamic interpretive talks throughout the day which highlight the unique features of our native wildlife. Many also offer an opportunity for YOU to get up close and personal with some of your favourite Aussie animals!

WILDLIFE TALKS AND SHOWS

We want you to get up close to these awesome creatures, and to appreciate their special place in nature, but we also want you to have fun! Feed the  kangaroos and ducks, cuddle a koala**, pose with a python, smile at a crocodile. It’s all about putting YOU in the picture. Get as close as you want, or just sit back and enjoy the show!

 

9:15 AM - KOALA FEEDING

This is the time of day when our koalas are most active, as Rangers feed them fresh gum leaves from our own eucalyptus plantation. It offers great photo opportunities as they clamber around their perches selecting their favourite tender green tips.

Did you know? A koala eats around a tenth of its body weight in leaves every single day!

9:30 AM - cassowary FEEDING

The magnificent cassowary is the third largest bird in the world and is a keystone species in maintaining the health of tropical rainforests.

There are thought to be fewer than 4000 left in the wild! Join this talk and learn why they are so important, and what we can do to help them.

We’ll even invite you to hand feed a piece of fruit to Hope or Troppo!

9:45 am - wombat experience

The wombat is the largest burrowing mammal in the world!
Join us at Yala’s enclosure to learn why they burrow underground, and learn about the three types of wombat in Australia and why one is critically endangered.

You can also watch Yala have fun with his enrichment toys.

Only the rangers are allowed to hold the wombats.

10:05 AM - 10:30 AM - KOALA EXPERIENCE

Our koala experiences are one of the best things to do in Townsville! Rangers will give a brief talk about the unique features of this adorable marsupial, sharing insights into their lives such as why they sleep for 20 hours a day.

Then we will open up one of our koala enclosures, or Koala Crescent so you can come on in and get up close for a selfie – free of charge!

(Sorry, no pats allowed)

10:30 - 11:00 AM - SOUVENIR PHOTO OPPORTUNITIES **

Join us at the Main Show Area for your souvenir photo with a koala, and/or a reptile (lizard, python or juvenile crocodile).

YES! You can hold a koala or stand beside it for a pat, or koala on a branch photo.

A print of your koala experience in a colourful folder is included in the price, as well as a code for digital copies to share. 

  • Photo of any animal Koala or crocodile or python $35
  • 2 animal photo combo Koala or crocodile or python $60 (saving $10)
  • 3 animal photo combo koala, crocodile, python $90 (saving $15)

Souvenir photos cannot be purchased online. Purchased on entry or at the photo hut. There are no limits on numbers of koala holding. You do not need to book ahead.

ATTENTION PARENTS

For the koala’s safety, as well as that of our visitors, we are required to restrict koala handling to children over 1.4 metres in height (4.5 feet). A board is posted by the photo area for reference.

11 AM - REPTILE EXPERIENCE

Rangers will introduce a lizard, a python and a juvenile crocodile or alligator, with a brief chat about what makes these reptiles so special.

Then it’s time to have some fun:  You can hold a friendly lizard, pose with a python and even cradle a baby crocodile! You are welcome to take selfies or have your friends or family take photos, all free of charge.

11:30AM - MEET THE MEERKATS

Meerkat ranger talk and feeding at the meerkat enclosure at 11:30. You’ll learn about these enchanting little members of the mongoose family as they munch on their mealworms and veggies. We’re sure you’ll agree: they are totally irresistible!

11:45AM - MEERKAT ENCOUNTER

Sit with them in their enclosure, offer them some food—and be prepared to have them climb all over you and entertain you with their antics!

You’re welcome to take selfies, or hand your device to our ranger who will take photos of the fun you’re having!

This encounter would make the perfect gift!

Here’s everything you need to know about our Meerkat Encounter:

  • Meet the Meerkats takes place every day (except Christmas Day) at 11:45 am and 2:00 pm
  • Cost is $65 per person; maximum 4 people per session. Session is 15 minutes long
  • Cost for the encounter does not include entrance to Billabong Sanctuary
    Minimum age is 8; children under 12 must be accompanied by paying adult
  • Ring the front desk on (07) 4778 8344 to make a booking; once paid, no refunds are given. Walk-ins are permitted subject to availability on the day—just ask when you arrive!
  • Participants must wear fully enclosed shoes (no thongs or sandals). We recommend you wear clothing which covers the arms and shoulders as the meerkats may climb up and perch on you—with the possibility of scratches.
  • Accessibility: We will make every effort to accommodate guests with mobility issues. Note that to enter the enclosure you will descend a couple of shallow steps and walk across a metre or two of sand to sit either on a chair that we provide, or on a log that is low to the ground. Feel free to discuss your requirements when booking.
  • Animal welfare: We want our meerkats to have a positive experience while you are enjoying the encounter. Please don’t pat them. Rangers reserve the right to terminate the interaction if there is an animal welfare issue.

12:00 NOON - CROCODILE FEEDING

The most exciting show of the day—a powerful saltwater croc explodes out of the water to snatch food from our Rangers! It’s the best croc show in Far North Queensland!

On weekends, the show starts at the Jawbridge over Krakatoa’s lagoon. At a massive 5.1 metres in length, he is the largest estuarine croc on mainland Queensland. Awesome!

On weekdays we give the big fella a break and feed our other enormous estuarine crocodiles. Meet our Rangers in front of Snappy Tom’s enclosure and they will guide you to the first location. North Queensland is croc country so learn how to stay safe while you enjoy our magnificent waterways.

We’ll also visit Australia’s endemic species– the freshwater crocodiles. These frisky little snappers jump clear off the ground to grab their lunch.

During summer months you can even join the fun - grab a ticket at Reception and for just $10 you can have the thrill of personally pole-feeding a freshie! Awesome!

1:00 PM - FREE FLIGHT BIRD SHOW AND INTERACTION

Watch out bird show as Yasi the black kite puts on an amazing display of aerial acrobatics.

Freeze, the bush stone-curlew, trots around the show area, snatching up bits of food. Have you heard the curlew’s eerie night-time cry?

Can you spot Skwimm, the tawny frogmouth, on his perch nearby? Such amazing camouflage! Don’t worry if you can’t spot him, our Rangers will bring him down so you can get a closer look.

The show ends with an opportunity to interact with more of our feathered friends: Waru, our young red-tailed black cockatoo or maybe a cheeky lorikeet. This is also your chance to have a hold for some delightful photos.

1:30 PM - TURTLE FEEDING

We invite you to join us at the edge of the billabong to feed fish skins to our voracious Krefft’s turtles! They just can’t get enough.

But watch out for the long-finned eels, as they churn up the water trying to grab their share.

This is fun for kids of all ages and not one to miss.

1:45PM - Dingo Experience

Meet our three gorgeous dingoes—Rocky, Rusty and Kirby.

Newly arrived from the Sydney Dingo Rescue, they are still settling in, exploring all the sights and smells of their new home. 

Dingoes are amazingly intelligent, resilient native animals, yet they suffer persecution in most parts of their range.  Learn why they play a vital role as apex predators in terrestrial ecosystems.

2PM - MEERKAT ENCOUNTER

Sit with them in their enclosure, offer them some food—and be prepared to have them climb all over you and entertain you with their antics!

You’re welcome to take selfies, or hand your device to our ranger who will take photos of the fun you’re having!

This encounter would make the perfect gift!

Here’s everything you need to know about our Meerkat Encounter:

  • Meet the Meerkats takes place every day (except Christmas Day) at 11:45 am and 2:00 pm
  • Cost is $65 per person; maximum 4 people per session. Session is 15 minutes long
  • Cost for the encounter does not include entrance to Billabong Sanctuary
    Minimum age is 8; children under 12 must be accompanied by paying adult
  • Ring the front desk on (07) 4778 8344
  • to make a booking; once paid, no refunds are given. Walk-ins are permitted subject to availability on the day—just ask when you arrive!
  • Participants must wear fully enclosed shoes (no thongs or sandals). We recommend you wear clothing which covers the arms and shoulders as the meerkats may climb up and perch on you—with the possibility of scratches.
  • Accessibility: Meet the Meerkats is not suitable for guests with mobility issues, as you will need to go down a couple of steps, walk across sand and sit on a log that is low to the ground.
  • Animal welfare: We want our meerkats to have a positive experience while you are enjoying the encounter. Please don’t pat them. Rangers reserve the right to terminate the interaction if there is an animal welfare issue.

2:00 PM - KOALA, WOMBAT, REPTILE EXPERIENCES

This is a shortened version of the morning show as Rangers discuss some of the amazing features of these Australian icons, with the opportunity for some personal interaction.

Take a selfie with a koala, watch a wombat playing with his soccer ball, and hold some scaly critters: a lizard, a python or even a baby crocodile! This is one wildlife experience you don’t want to miss on your Townsville holiday.

2:45 PM - SOUVENIR PHOTO OPPORTUNITIES **

Join us at the Main Show Area to purchase your souvenir photo with a koala and/or a reptile (lizard, python or juvenile crocodile).

YES! You can hold a koala, or stand beside it and give it a pat for a koala on a branch photo.

You will also receive a print of your souvenir photo in a colourful folder included in the price, as well as a code for digital copies to share. 

  • Photo of any animal Koala or crocodile or python $35
  • 2 animal photo combo Koala or crocodile or python $60 (saving $10)
  • 3 animal photo combo koala, crocodile, python $90 (saving $15)

Souvenir photos cannot be purchased online. Purchased on entry or at the photo hut. There are no limits on numbers of koala holding. You do not need to book ahead.

ATTENTION PARENTS

For the koala’s safety, as well as that of our visitors, we are required to restrict koala handling to children over 1.4 metres in height (4.5 feet). A board is posted by the photo area for reference.

3:15 PM - CROCODILE FEEDING

Once again, Rangers coax our mighty estuarine crocs out of the water in an awesome display of speed and power as our crocs enjoy their afternoon feeding session.

North Queensland is croc country, so enjoy our Rangers presentation and learn how to stay safe while you enjoy our magnificent waterways.

4:00 PM - PARK CLOSES

Thanks for coming. Hope you had an awesome day!

** Optional Souvenir Photo for a small extra charge.

ATTENTION PARENTS

Children who do not meet this requirement are still welcome to join Mum and Dad or big brother and sister for a family photo.

Over in Koala Crescent, another of our friendly koalas sitting on a branch will happily pose while you take a selfie or while your friends or family take your photo.

Note: Maximum of 2 adults and 5 children from the same family per souvenir photo.

Things to do in Townsville

We are proud to offer Australia’s best interactive wildlife experience!

Buy Tickets

Opening Hours & Prices

Show Times

How to Get Here

Interactive Experiences

Club Billabong