The Camels of Camelot
Last weekend my sister and I ventured out past Gympie in Queensland, to visit a dairy. Not just any old dairy, but a camel dairy. I've never been close to a camel before but have always loved them from afar. Not really knowing their temperament, I wasn't sure what to expect, I mean they're big animals so are they flighty, aggressive, 'bitey'? I was about to find out...
Oh my God, they are completely and in every way incredible
Three Facts about Camels:
- Australia has the largest wild population of camels in the world
- They sometimes pee or poo on their tails and then flick you with it - just for fun
- They shed a 'worry' tear when they are distressed and need a cuddle
The owners of Camelot Dairies are Wayne and Melanie who work together with their son Matty to bring camel milk to South East Queensland. Charming and friendly, it is obvious from the moment we meet that owning a camel dairy is not merely a business to them. They love their animals, and quite honestly, what's not to love.
These camels are completely adorable beings. They love to be touched, stroked and cuddled. They're inquisitive and cheeky, funny and sometimes very noisy.
Camels were introduced into Australia in the 1800's to be used in expeditions into the outback. The first major expedition using these 'ships of the desert' was the Victorian Exploring Expedition in 1860, better know to most as The Burke and Wills Expedition. It didn't end well for the explorers, however the camels proved their own worth.
When I found out Australia has the largest population of wild camels in the world, I was completely surprised. The average Australian hasn't ever seen a camel - either on a farm or in the wild - so to discover there are over a million of them roaming the country, basically blows my mind. We associate camels with the Arabian deserts, or maybe riding a camel on the beach in Broome, but not our own backyard filled with them. It makes me want to get out there a find them.
Back to the dairy, the milk these beautiful animals produce and why we should be drinking it. The story is in the next issue of the magazine, out February 5. Subscribe Now