"> Wildlife Sanctuary North Queensland - Volunteer Overseas with IVI

Australian Wildlife Sanctuary North Queensland

A genuine Australian Native Zoo experience! Assist in the care and maintenance of Australian mammals including crocodiles, cockatoos, parrots and other Australian native species in beautiful tropical North Queensland in a local zoo.

Australian Wildlife Sanctuary North Queensland



Program Fees

Whats Included

  • Arrival transfer from Mossman (Make own way from Cairns)
  • 7 nights accommodation p/week – Volunteer Center (single or twin share rooms)
  • 3 Meals per day (Breakfast, lunch & Dinner)
  • Bicycle for duration of stay (10 min bike ride to beach)
  • Transportation into Mossman town if needed
  • Volunteer discount rates on tours and attractions (heaps of local advise)
  • Use of necessary equipment and project materials
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • Certificate of Completion

Whats Not Included

  • Travel insurance (mandatory)
  • Airfares & visa fees
  • Transportation from Cairns to Mossman (Bus costs approx AUD $50 return)
  • Additional tours, souvenirs, spending money


Apply Now!


Background Information

This organization has a large comprehensive display of Australian mammals, including other animals such as crocodiles (12 crocs!), cockatoos and parrots. The sanctuary also houses five endangered species, of which are in breeding programs. A love for animals in a must and they all work closely together to ensure the well being of the animals in their care.

The Zoo is set in 5 hectares (10 acres) of tropical gardens and comprises several guest B&B style accommodation rooms (including a large pool) and some 120 species of Australian native birds, mammals and reptiles including crocodiles, kangaroos, cassowaries, emus, dingos and wombats to name a few.

The Sanctuary is a brilliant day out from Port Douglas or Cairns for families, individuals and groups wanting to see, touch and photograph wildlife set within wetland reserves and purpose built aviaries with first class amenities.

Project Tasks

Volunteers typically assist with daily feeding of animals and birds, cleaning enclosures, gardening, painting, light construction work and at times, assisting with the preparation of the accommodation rooms, building of new enclosures etc. There is also a farm located 250km inland and volunteers may choose to experience working on a farm if desired.

Hours of work are typically 7.30am to 1.00pm with a break in between. This means you have your afternoon’s off to do as you please! Weekends are also free time. Every 2nd night 30mins for night feeding is also required. Please note, at times volunteering in the zoo can be hard work! You’ll need to be hard working to be accepted into the program 🙂

Accommodation inclusions

  • Volunteers are housed dedicated volunteer guest house located separately from the main B&B quarters. The volunteer guest house sleeps up to 8, but generally no more than 4 volunteers at a time. There are 3 bedrooms, a living area and kitchen.
  • The accommodation is clean and comfortable with air conditioning and/or fans provided as it’s hot in Queensland!
  • You’ll have full access to the pool area to chill out at your leisure. from 1pm onward each day.
  • You’ll have access to a bicycle to get to Wonga Beach, local store etc
  • Great food; all the fresh meat and vegetables that you can eat.
  • Free Wifi at the reception are. Most volunteers will purchase their own data plan with local sim however.

Volunteer Expectations

  • That you are a genuine, honest and hard working person
  • That you have a positive can-do attitude
  • That you are willing to get your hands dirty, get wet when it rains etc.
  • That you are comfortable around animals (no phobias of birds etc.)
  • That you are fluent in English and can understand general directions
  • That you have a sense of humor and don’t take things to heart (Important!)
  • That you do not smoke
  • That you do not have any special dietary requirements


Free pick you up and drop off from the Mossman bus depot is included. This means you’ll need to find your own way to Mossman. Bus transfers operate multiple times daily from Cairns which is the closest airport.

About the Animals

Just some of the wildlife you are likely to encounter at the zoo!

Freshwater Crocodile
Saltwater Crocodile
Tiger Quoll
Sugar Glider
Squirrel Glider
Northern Bettong
Rufous Bettong
Eastern Grey Kangaroo
King Quail
Dusky Moorhen
Buff-banded Rail
Pacific Black Duck
Plumed Whistling -Duck
Rainbow Lorikeet
Red-necked Lorikeet
Scaly-breasted Lorikeet
Varied Lorikeet
Black Kite
Eastern Rosella
Pale-headed Rosella
Northern Rosella
Western Rosella
Port Lincoln Ringneck
Mallee Ringneck
Twenty-eight Parrot
Blue-winged Parrot
Elegant Parrot
Turquoise Parrot
Scarlett-chested Parrot
Gouldian Finch
Australian Wood Duck
Cattle Egret
Nankeen Night Heron
Bush Thick-knee
Rose-crowned Fruit-Dove
Superb Fruit-Dove
Peaceful Dove
Bar-shouldered Dove
Zebra Finch
Long-tailed Finch
Plumb-headed Finch
Crimson Finch
Star Finch
Diamond Firetail
Chestnut-breasted Mannikin
Blue-faced Parrot-Finch
Emerald Dove
Spinifex Pigeon
Southern Boobook
Tawny Frogmouth
Blue-winged Kookaburra
Laughing Kookaburra
Double-barred Finc
Musk Lorikeet
Australian King Parrot
Red-winged Parrot
Cloncurry Ringneck
Golden-shouldered Parrot
Hooded Parrot
Blue Bonnet
Bourke’s Parrot
Crested Pigeon
Wonga Pigeon
Pied Imperial Pigeon
Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo
(4 sub-species)
Glossy Black-Cockatoo
Yellow-tailed BlackCockatoo
(2 sub-species)
White-tailed BlackCockatoo
(2 sub-species)
Gang-Gang Cockatoo
Galah (2 sub-species)
Long-billed Corella
(2 sub-species)
Little Corella
Short-billed Corella
Major Mitchell’s Cookatoo
Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
Eclectus Parrot
Superb Parrot
Regent Parrot
Princess Parrot
Red-capped Parrot
Red-rumped Pa
Adelaide Rosella
Green Rosella
Crimson Rosella
Yellow Rosella

Visa Requirements

It is the responsibility of all participants to obtain any necessary visas.

Please follow and like us:


Review of Australian Wildlife Sanctuary Project

Highlights of the trip: All of it!! The Zoo was AMAZING and I loved my time there and can’t wait to go back! The zoo is well maintained, the standard of care for all the animals is first rate and Donna and Gill run an efficient ship to keep it all that way. I honestly can’t rave about it enough, …

Continue reading  

Australian Zoo Volunteering- Review by Sonja

Highlights of the trip: I really enjoyed my stay at the zoo because I learned a lot about Australian wildlife. You can tell that Donna and Gil are very animal-loving by the way they care about them and always try to feed and let them live species-appropriate. It’s hard to tell what I liked most about my stay because there …

Continue reading  

Australian Wildlife Sanctuary

Dear Lauren Here is my feedback on our trip. Thank you for helping us with our questions concerning our journey to Australia! We had a good time at the Zoo. Highlights of the trip: My highlight of the trip was seeing animals I have never seen before such as kangaroos, wombats and crocodiles at the zoo. We also went to …

Continue reading  

North QLD Wildlife Sanctuary Review

The best experience I have had since I’ve been in Australia. It took me a good week or so to get used to serenity and quietness of working at the zoo, but after that I can honestly say that as the weeks progressed the more enjoyment I took from the job. As has been outlined in previous reviews, the work …

Continue reading  

Daintree Wildlife Review

We spent six weeks with Gil and Donna, and we had a great time! Basically, everything that`s advertised on their profile is true: we worked from 7.30am til 1pm, with a breakfast at 9.30. And we never worked later than 1pm (sometimes we even finished earlier)! As a girl, I worked mainly with Donna. I spent the first 2hs feeding …

Continue reading  

Wildlife Zoo Experience

  We spent 3 weeks helping at the zoo but we hope we had time to stay longer!  Definitely, it was the kind of job we were looking for and we are very happy that everything went well. We have outdone ourselves to be as efficient as possible when working with all the lovely animals and that brought us many …

Continue reading  

Australian Wildlife Sanctuary – 2015

Dear Lauren, How are you? Sorry for my late reply as I was busy travelling around Australia after leaving the Daintree. I enjoyed both of the placements very much!  I highly appreciate Tina and her family for dedicating themselves entirely to save the endangered species from extinction, despite lack of manpower and funding. Attached are some photos that I took during …

Continue reading  
Social Share Buttons and Icons powered by Ultimatelysocial