Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, the world’s first and largest koala sanctuary located in Fig Tree Pocket, is undergoing a $1.4 million expansion which will include new attractions to offer fresh experiences to visitors.
The upgrades, which would cover 15,000-sqm of space, include a Wild Walk exhibit that involves new animal enclosures through a new wildlife zone and is contained within the existing established eucalyptus plantation.
The Wild Walk Exhibit Space will feature new exhibits for echidnas and koalas and breeding space for wombats and Tasmanian devils.
“And for the first time, night tours will fit-out visitors with thermal imaging scanners to show nocturnal animals in their habitat without the intrusion of flashlights,” said Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchliffe, who led the groundbreaking ceremony in August 2021.
Mr Hinchliffe said Lone Pine has a load of quokkas going through biosecurity clearances to join the family, which already includes the world-famous koalas, tree kangaroos, wombats, echidnas, Tasmanian devils, bettongs and potoroos.
“The thermal imaging scanners will automatically upload images for tourists to take home as a lasting reminder of their night-time visit,” the Minister added.
The upgrades are part of the government’s Queensland tourism Covid-19 Economic Recovery Plan, which aims to keep the economy moving even at the time of the pandemic.
“Since opening in 1927, Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary has been a favourite with domestic and international visitors, as well as generations of Southeast Queensland families,” Mr Hinchliffe said.
“This project will not only allow us to provide local, interstate and international guests with new and engaging wildlife experiences, but also help us secure ongoing employment opportunities for both new and existing staff, and significantly contribute to Brisbane’s recovering tourism industry,” he said.
“We’ve invested $1.2 million in Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary through our Growing Tourism Infrastructure Fund to help deliver new tourism experiences and up to 25 construction and ongoing jobs,” he added.
Lone Pine’s expansion is expected to be completed in mid-2022, weather permitting.