Monday, October 30, 2023

Australia Zoo on alert as fires burn; Norway’s cheese Olympics; Not a great weekend for Kiwis; and the deer who dropped in for noodles.


Deer drops in for noodles:


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Zookeepers at Queensland’s Australia Zoo had a nervous weekend as bushfires continued to burn on the Sunshine Coast and some 36 homes were destroyed further inland.

Residents close to Bindi and Robert Irwin’s zoo in Beerwah were told to evacuate their homes as firefighters fought back the flames and bravely saved the zoo’s African savannah enclosure from being burned. 

Fire experts believe several of the Queensland blazes were started by something called ‘dry lightning’ .. which is when storms build and there is thunder and lightning – but very little or no rain. It means the lightning strikes the ground and sets the bush alight. 

You’re going to hear a lot again this week about the escalating crisis in the Middle East, after the country of Israel yesterday launched a ground invasion of a neighbouring patch of land called the Gaza Strip.

Escalating is a fancy word used to describe a situation which becomes more tense as time goes by. 

The reasons for this conflict are pretty complex – and stretch back thousands of years. So – because it’s important to understand what’s happening in the world around us, and to understand a little bit about the context in which it’s happening – we’ve put together a special Squiz Kids Shortcut on the Israel/Hamas conflict – which we’ll release first thing tomorrow. 



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops .. and today we’ve landed in Wisconsin, in the United States … where a deer has interrupted the lunch time rush at a noodle restaurant by crashing through the front window and sending diners scrambling.

I’ve stuck a link to video of the gate-crasher in today’s episode notes: the  look of disbelief on diners’ faces as the deer charges past them and into the kitchen is quite something.

The adventurous buck didn’t stay long enough to get a feed however – running straight through the kitchen and out the back door. Maybe the prices were too dear? (DAD JOKE ALARM) … aaaand there goes the dad joke alarm …. awww – come on, it was asking for it. 



South Africa’s national rugby team, the Springboks made a little bit of history yesterday morning winning the Rugby World Cup against New Zealand by the teeny tiniest of margins.

In front of a capacity crowd in Paris, the Boks clung to an early lead and just managed to hold out the All Blacks – who were playing most of the game with a man down, after New Zealand captain Sam Cane was red carded for a head high tackle. The final score: 12-11 to the Boks – making them the first team in world cup history to win the Web Ellis cup four times. 

All things considered: it was not a great weekend to be a Kiwi. In Melbourne, Australia’s men’s rugby league team, the Kangaroos, beat New Zealand by 36-18 – while over in India, the Aussie men’s cricket team edged out New Zealand in a World Cup match by five runs – thanks largely to an impressive innings by Australian batsman Travis Head who hit 109 runs off 67 balls. A feat made all the more impressive by the fact he hadn’t played for six weeks after breaking his hand. Impressive. 



You’ve heard of the Olympics, right? But what about the cheese Olympics? Where all the cheese of the world come together and compete to see which is the creamiest, the goo-iest, the biti-est, the smoothest and the runn-iest.

Because that’s what’s just taken place in Norway over the weekend – the world cheese championships – where no fewer than 4.500 cheeses from every corner of the world competed for top cheese status. 

And the winner was? A blue cheese from Norway called Nidelven Blå which judges described as being fudgy, creamy and ripe …

You know blue cheese right? It’s the one that has mould growing in it … yep, that’s right, mould. And it’s sooooo good. 

Ok – so maybe it’s what’s called an acquired taste … 


A huge thank you to all of the Squiz Kids that sent in questions for our Julia Gillard Q+A … we had a flood of excellent questions sent in for us to put to Australia’s first female Prime Minister – and she was just as impressed as we were by how smart the questions were. I had a great chat with the former PM at the end of last week – and can’t wait to share it with you all first thing Thursday morning. Keep an eye out for it in the Squiz Kids podcast feed … 


This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …

  1. What’s the name of the Australian mens’ rugby league team?
  2. Which country won this year’s Rugby World Cup?
  3. In which country were this year’s World Cheese Awards held?





It’s October 30  … it’s the day before Halloween …. (EVIL LAUGH) … have you got your costumes ready to hit the streets and go trick or treating? It’s also Grandparents Day in Australia … so be sure to tell your nan and pop how much you love them today.. 


It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today AND tomorrow… Benny from Junee, Jimmy from West Croydon, Sammy from Matraville, Nate and Seb from Mitcham, Maximus from Box Hill North, Marcius (pronounced Markus) from Forster, Lekeisha from Unanderra, Aerin from Five Dock, Angus from Cheltenham, Vincent from Burpengary, Destiny from Rooty Hill, Hamish from Frenchs Forest, Zach from Nuriootpa, Oliver from Hornsby and Jing listening from Phuket, Thailand. 


And belated shout outs go to… Milla from Five Dock, Victoria from Goodna, Edwin and Paco from Doncaster, Cohen from Bussellton, Elliot from Shenton Park, Zia from Holsworthy and Logan from Albion PArk.


Classroom shout outs go to …  class 6CK and Ms Kalinowsky at Stuart Park Primary in Darwin, stage 3 with Mrs O’Hara at Mortlake Public School in Concord, class MB5 and Ms Harris at Highbury Primary School, class 5 Blue with Mrs Hutchinson at Saint Mary’s Primary School in Toukley, class ER with Emma and Rebecca at Brunswick North West Primary School and lastly the year 3/4 classes with Miss Black, Mrs M and Mr Jones at Anderson Creek Primary School in Warrandyte. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Kangaroos
  2. South Africa
  3. Norway