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New reptile babies for Rainbow Springs

News Release

New reptile babies for Rainbow Springs

Rotorua, 30 August 2012 – Rainbow Springs has eight new reptile arrivals - baby bearded dragons.

The native Australian lizards hatched at Auckland Zoo and recently made the journey by car to their new home at Rainbow Springs in Rotorua. The park houses a range of New Zealand native and exotic wildlife and has a strong conservation role as a tuatara breeder and is New Zealand's largest brown kiwi hatchery.

Mark Paterson, Rainbow Springs Wildlife & Presentations Manager says, "I was on the lookout for bearded dragons and when Auckland Zoo's latest clutch hatched I took the opportunity to bring some down to the park."

The four-month-old lizards are now on public display and in time will be between 330 to 610 mm in length, a long stretch from their current 70 mm length. They currently weigh between 5.6 - 12.1 grams and at mature weight will be between 2-3 kgs.

At the moment the lizards are consuming a protein rich diet to sustain their growth, as omnivores an adult captive bearded dragon will eat mostly leafy greens, vegetables and non citrus fruits, supplemented regularly with insects. The lizards have the ability to change colour during rivalry challenges between males and in response to temperature change.

Eventually the bearded dragons will feature in the free-flight bird and exotic wildlife show at Rainbow Springs, along with stars of the show Ritchie the macaw - one of the world's largest parrots - Charlie the cockatoo and Qantas the galah. Fellow reptiles a blue tongue lizard and water dragon also feature, making for a fact filled and fun look at their lives and habitat. The show is held daily at the park's new auditorium.

Rainbow Springs is an icon of New Zealand tourism and has been open since 1932. Spread over 22 acres of Rotorua parkland, Rainbow Springs is a conservation and breeding haven for endangered New Zealand species such as Kiwi and tuatara. The park offers a unique wildlife experience for visitors, who can see animals in their natural environment, both during the day and night. Features of the award winning tourist attraction include New Zealand's only 'open to view' Kiwi hatchery, and a range of wildlife including trout, tuatara and native birds.
Rainbow Springs, Fairy Springs Road, Rotorua.


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