Would You Dare To Enter The Lions Den?! Monarto Zoo Predator Experience

Would you dare to enter the Lion’s den?!  Sarah Constructions are helping Monarto Zoo to make this wild dream a reality with construction commencing this month on their new Predator Experience which forms part of the Zoos SA 20-year Masterplan.

Up to 30 visitors at a time will be able to enter a tunnel and emerge within the lion’s enclosure to become part of the pride and have an up-close experience with these magnificent creatures. Peter Clark, Zoos SA Life Sciences director, explains “the Predator Experience is all about reversing the traditional zoo experience by putting our visitors in a cage, with our lions free to roam their 10-hectare habitat”.

Monarto Zoo, located 60 minutes (70 kilometres) from Adelaide, is one of the largest open-range zoos in the world spanning more than 1,500 hectares. The Zoo opened in 1983 as a breeding and pasture area and is now home to more than 500 animals roaming in vistas as far as the eye can see. Not only does this zoo immerse visitors in a natural safari style setting, the revenue it creates goes directly back into supporting its world class breeding programmes.

The Sarah Constructions site team are excited to be part of such a unique project –  it’s not often that the stakeholders you need to consider as part of your project planning include a Pride of Lions!

Some of the key elements specific to this unique project include:

  • Installation of 120LM of temporary electrified lion proof fencing prior to commencement of works within the field
  • Managing construction while the Zoo remains fully operational – it’s still ‘business as usual’
  • Coordinating material deliveries through the zoo with very strict traffic management requirements to ensure no negative impacts on the animals’ welfare or the visitor experience
  • Development and implementation of a serious structural steel coating system to combat the extremely corrosive Lion urine!
  • All underground electrical and hydraulic services
  • Pouring of the bell slab, including 30+ pocket set down pieces for handrails and structural steel into the exposed concrete slab finish

Zoos SA is a not-for-profit conservation charity that exists to save species from extinction and connect people with nature. Over the last 21 years, the lion population in the wild is believed to have been reduced by 43% – the equivalent of 3 generations! With approximately 16,000 – 30,000 African Lions left in the wild, the African Lion is now classified as Vulnerable to extinction, which makes the Monarto Zoo Lion Pride a very important part in the preservation of this wonderful species.  If you would like to support the breeding program check out this video for more information: https://www.zoossa.com.au/supportlions/

Photography by Golotta Photography, http://www.golottaphotography.com/

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