Securing a shared future for wildlife and people

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Iggy Fox

A family hen, large egg and inquisitive boy lead to an egg-normous scientific finding!

Six grader Iggy Fox’s video, egg-normous, is a great representation of our youth’s curiosity and out of the box thinking, not to mention love of science.  After noticing that one of his family’s hen produced a larger than average egg, Iggy’s curiosity started him on a 106 day research project to discover the cause.  Comparing hen feed with varying levels of protein and carbohydrates and their correlated egg size, he concluded that hens on a diet high in protein, produces larger free-range eggs.  

NSW Environment Minister, Robyn Parker said: “Iggy is an exceptional young man who recently took out the Sleek Geeks Science Prize (primary school) in the Australian Museum’s Eureka Prizes, the most comprehensive and prestigious national science awards.”

To recognize Iggy’s achievement, Iggy and his family a were treated to a private VIP tour of Taronga Zoo, including up close animal encounters and a tour of Taronga’s Wildlife Hospital. 

“I know Iggy Fox will have a great time at the Zoo today and will be well looked after by staff. I understand he has a love of reptiles so there will be plenty to see during his visit.” said Minister Parker.

Jane from the Research and Conservation team at Taronga Zoo took Iggy and his family around, her recap below:

It was great to meet and speak with Iggy Fox and his family on their visit to the Zoo today.  After a brief introduction to the scope of the work that we do here at Taronga and the various ways in which young adults can get involved (including the Youth At The Zoo volunteer program), the Fox family set out on a behind the scenes tour to find out what makes the zoo tick.

During their visit, the Fox family got to meet with the reptile keepers and learn about the Corroboree Frog and Fijian Crested Iguana conservation projects as well as see some of the cool reptilian critters. Iggy then got a tour of the Taronga Wildlife Hospital where he got to see the veterinary team treating some marine turtles and owls.

At the end of the day, Iggy’s favourite part of the tour was looking at the bird keeper facilities and learning about the types of food we feed our animals and the work that Taronga is doing to safeguard an iconic Australian bird, the Regent Honeyeater.  He also learnt about some reaserch we’re helping with to learn more about Port Jackson Sharks, the tour finished at the Education Centre where Iggy and his family saw some unique Australian wildlife including the bearded dragon (pictured).

Though he is a quiet boy, Iggy is switched on to the problems affecting our wildlife and took a great deal away from his visit and the time spent talking with keepers and researchers. We wish him all the best in the future and hope to see him continue to question the world around him and produce great science like he did in his Eureka Prize winning video – Egg-normous.

“I thought I might like to work at the Zoo one day, but I never thought it would be so cool!” – Iggy Fox

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