Travel film-maker Kelley Ferro helped us produce a video series on Australia’s Northern Territory, where in this episode she shines a light on some of the incredible wildlife of this region. When you think of Aussie animals, you’ll probably think of kangaroo’s or koala’s, but according to Kelley it was the feral camel which became the star of her trip… that’s right – feral camels. There are thousands of wild camels in the Australian outback. Around the turn of the last century, a rail line was being laid between Adelaide at the bottom of Australia and Darwin at the very top. Due to the inhospitable hot desert climate, workers from another British colony, India, were brought over. For some reason or another, these men were referred to as “Afghan’s“, they were nonetheless legendary cameleers. These men left two distinct reminders of their time in the outback. The ‘Ghan Train takes almost 60 hours to travel 3000km from the top to bottom of Australia, cutting right through the Northern Territory and the heart of Australia. The other legacy – is the huge numbers of now wild camels, which roam the desert free of predators, free of diseases (due to Australia’s tight quarantine laws) typical of wild camels like rabies, or ticks, and have become the most prized, healthy and beautiful camels around the world. Australia exports tens of thousands of them yearly to places like Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.
Camels have since become iconic to the people who call the Northern Territory home, as well as to anyone who visits. Every year, the Alice Springs Camel Cup draws people from all over the state and the country to witness a pretty fun day of camel races, games and fun. Make no mistake – this ships of the desert can move fast!
Reptiles are another animal which thrive in desert conditions, and Kelley was able to handle some of these scaly critters at a wildlife centre. Checkout the video below: