Well-behaved wombat turns one

Poppy with keeper Hewin Hochkins Photo: Australian Reptile Park

Arguably one of the cutest animals on site, Poppy the wombat joey celebrated her first birthday this week at the Australian Reptile Park.

The miracle marsupial had a rough start to life but pulled through and received lots of snuggles and kisses along with snacks on a delicious birthday platter which included corn, sweet potato, carrot, and the freshest grass available.

Poppy then had bottle and a nap before heading out into the park to greet guests.

Poppy was found last September, still in the pouch, after her mum was hit and killed by a car.

Road strike is an all-too-common occurrence for wombats but luckily a passer-by checked the pouch and discovered a tiny, scared face staring back at her.

Poppy was taken to the Park where she was cared for 24/7 and grew to be happy and healthy.

Head Keeper of Mammals Hewin Hochkins said Poppy arrived at a time when Park staff needed a little bit of hope during park closures due to COVID-19.

“We love having the opportunity to throw a birthday party for our animals; I think they know we’re celebrating them,” he said.

“Poppy was eagerly seeking out snuggles from all the keepers and visitors and loved all the special treats we gave her.

“She is one of the most well behaved and wonderful wombats I’ve ever worked with … and I’ve worked with plenty.”

Visitors can meet Poppy the wombat during daily encounters at 12:30pm.