Apple the Wallaby, the first wild wallaby to claim her own hashtag, has developed a devoted social media following thanks to her adorable antics. Thala Beach Nature Reserve is excited to announce that #AppletheWallaby has a new joey emerging from the pouch, adding another winsome wallaby breaking hearts across the globe. Free to roam 58ha of unfenced native forest, for the past 18 months Apple has been making unscheduled visits to the lobby of Thala, thrilling guests with her friendly charm. Now her joey looks likely to follow her Insta-famous mum.
Inhabiting beachfront forest belonging to this popular eco-retreat near Port Douglas, Queensland, the challenge has begun to find a name for Apple’s joey.
Thala has launched a Name the Joey competition encouraging Apple’s adoring fans to name her equally adorable joey. The competition runs until 25 Nov 2016 via Thala’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/ThalaBeachLodge) with the winning name to be announced on 30 Nov 2016.
One of Australia’s most common macropods, agile wallabies thrive in the sort of open woodlands and native grasslands that Thala is known for. Small kangaroos less than one metre tall, Thala’s onsite Rangers estimate there are more than 50 adult wallabies and joeys inhabiting the forest. In line with Thala’s highly respected reputation and Advanced Eco-tourism credentials, native flora and fauna are carefully monitored to ensure minimal impact on the environment.
Thala is a haven for native wildlife including some of Australia’s best known creatures. As well as wallabies, three possum species have been spotted near the Stargazing Observatory: long tailed pygmy possums, sugar gliders and the striped possum. Bandicoots as well as echidnas are also sighted regularly. A firm favourite with ‘twitchers’, almost 200 bird and 150 butterfly species have also been documented at Thala.
Opened in 1998 and awarded the highest ecotourism accreditation, Thala offers guests meaningful nature experiences with minimal environmental impact. The land Thala occupies was formerly sugarcane farmland back in the 1970’s when Robert and Oonagh Prettejohn purchased it. More than 30 years later they’ve managed the re-establishment of complex native forests, shunning the use of damaging chemicals and pesticides. Achieving eco-certification through sustainable practices and environmental sensitivity allows guests to assist in the environmental rehabilitation process. Deluxe eco designed timber bungalows are built on stilts within the forest canopy providing a private and unobtrusive approach to nature.
Located 45 minutes north of Cairns International Airport, Thala sits atop a headland surrounded by forest-clad ranges overlooking Great Barrier Reef waters. With wild wallabies roaming free amongst native flora and fauna, Thala is an eco-retreat with environment integrity.