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Cuckoo for kangaroos? They’ll be hopping at San Diego Zoo Safari Park’s new Walkabout Australia

Wild about wallabies? Cuckoo for kangaroos? Get ready to head Down Under, no flight required.

On Friday, Walkabout Australia, a new 3.6-acre habitat, opened at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Visitors can stroll among Western gray kangaroos, red-neck wallabies, cassowaries and other Australian wildlife and fauna.

The experience is “immersive and educational” as guests travel “from the wide-open grasslands, to the rain forests and the arid deserts,” Steve Metzler, animal care manager at Walkabout Australia, said in an email

“Australia, much like California, is experiencing increasing temperatures, prolonged periods of drought, and an increase in wild fires in this era of climate change. Walkabout Australia explores this vital connection between water and the people and animals that depend on it.”

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Before you go, you can take an online quiz to discover your inner Aussie animal. (I hoped to be a social kangaroo but wound up an independent echidna.)

Or download the free Danceabout Australia iOS Augmented Reality app that lets you position dancing kangaroos. (Seriously. I have had three kangaroos dancing in my kitchen and hallway.)

The zoo also prepares visitors to think like a kangaroo with a few tongue-in-cheek “Rooisms.” I’m eager to say: “To be, or wallaby . . . what was the question?” to any wallaby who will listen.

Entrance to Walkabout Australia is included with admission, which costs $54 for adults and $44 children ages 3 to 11.

Info: San Diego Zoo Safari Park, (619) 231-1515

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