SATU, the six-year-old Sumatran tiger at Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo, wasn’t out of his depth when he chased a heatwave treat thrown by mistake into his moat yesterday by keeper Melanie Friedman.
At her coaxing, he slowly but surely made his way into the water and seized the ice block containing pieces of beef.
The shade then beckoned the splendid beast as it did for many of the 700 animals living across the three-square-kilometre zoo.
Tender loving care of the animals was the order of the day for zoo staff as the temperature rose and a hot wind blew.
Extra monitoring of creatures big and small helped prevent heat stress.
So did the opportunity for the animals to wallow, swim, sit or stand under sprinklers while chewing on something cool.
Not all inhabitants of the zoo were adverse to a hot spell, including the Asian elephants that only dip their toes in a pool if it is warm.