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Athletes join Karak Junior's first birthday celebrations

28 Nov 05 23:35
Karak with athletes Kyle Van Der Kuyp and Paul Burgess.Karak Junior, a South-eastern Red-Tailed Black Cockatoo and the younger cousin of the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games Mascot, Karak, today celebrated his first birthday at Healesville Sanctuary.

Junior celebrated his birthday with more than 300 children and athletes Kyle Vander Kuyp, a triple Commonwealth Games finalist in the 110 metre hurdles, and Paul Burgess, a pole vaulter ranked in the world top 10. The athletes helped cut a giant Nestle Peters ice-cream cake which stood more than a metre high.

A special guest joined the celebrations -- a new four-week-old South-eastern Red-Tailed Black Cockatoo, the second ever baby to be bred in captivity.

Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games Chairman, Mr Ronald J Walker, said it was a great thing for Australia’s wildlife to have new additions to the endangered species family.

“It is very exciting that since the announcement of Karak as the Games Mascot, Healesville Sanctuary has had two birds bred in captivity. This has not happened for more than a decade”.

And coincidentally, Karak Junior’s birthday is the same day as the Closing Ceremony of the Melbourne 2006 Games in 12 months time!

See Karak Junior's birthday snaps from his party at Healesville Sanctuary.

Learn more about Karak Junior
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