Timon’s Story: Our Hand-Raised Rufous Bettong

rescue ruffus bettong cairns zoom wildlife dome

The relationships between our keepers and our animals are truly special. However, when it comes to Timon the Rufous Bettong and our keeper Chloe, the connection is something that most of us will never truly experience.

After Timon was abandoned by his mother, Chloe stepped in and became his surrogate mother. From bottle-feeding him every 3.5 hours 24-7, to giving him adorable cuddles, Timon and Chloe’s story is enough to melt anyone’s heart!

Timon’s Story

timon baby ruffus bettong

Timon when he was first rescued by Chloe in 2014

In 2014, Timon was found tiny and fragile in our wildlife park after his mother had abandoned him. Unfortunately, sometimes macropods drop their joeys from their pouch and do not accept them back.

Timon was at an age where he would not survive alone and out of the pouch. Luckily, wildlife hero Chloe stepped in and took him in as her own baby.

When she first began hand-raising this adorable Rufous Bettong, Chloe needed to bottle feed Timon every 3.5 hours on a 24 hour a day basis. This meant that everywhere Chloe went, Timon went too!

chloe and hand raised bettong timon

Chloe and Timon are still as close as ever!

Now fully grown and living in our wildlife park, Timon is a friendly character adored by keepers and customers alike.

The little fella is always up say good morning to our keepers when they arrive for the day and continues to enjoy regular cuddles from his mum Chloe!

“He’s like a member of the family”, Chloe says. “He has definitely stolen everyone’s hearts.”

Rufous Bettong: Quick Facts

  • This marsupial is also known as the Rufous Rat Kangaroo
  • During the day, the sleep in conical grass nests
  • They dwell in forests and woodlands along the Australian East Coast
  • Its diet consists of grass, herbs, roots, tubers and funghi
  • They are able to produce up to three babies per yer
  • It is the largest member of the potoroid family

Meet Timon at Cairns Zoom & Wildlife Dome. Book now!