Thursday, April 2, 2015


Please tell us a little bit about your background:
I was a legal Secretary for twenty years and have since been a typist for a team of Orthopaedic Surgeons, a Neurosurgeon and a Pain Specialist for the past fourteen years. When I travel with our reptile exhibition I am still able to do my typing via the internet at night.

           You work in the entertainment industry.  Have you always wanted to be an entertainer/exhibitor or did you aspire to be something else when you were growing up?
I have always wanted to be on stage and do something BIG, though nothing in my past led me down that path.

How did you come to work as an exhibitor and handler of reptiles?
My husband, Derek, has always had reptiles as pets, though I had basically ignored them, thinking snakes were not very nice. I used to cover his snakes up whenever people visited our home.  We met a couple through a motivational and investment group who were already doing reptiles shows and had vast knowledge of crocodiles.  My husband starting doing shows for them (he is used to being in the public eye as he was a professional ballroom dancer and also does acting and extras work). That couple was in the process of buying a small country zoo and Derek went in to manage the zoo for two years.  The couple then decided to move back to England and so Derek decided he would start his own reptile exhibition business.  I wasn’t much interested as I already had a good, full time job so I agreed that he would be the “face” of Croc Stars and I would do the bookwork for him after hours.  A couple of years into it he got so busy he asked me to join him doing shows.  He gave me my own reptiles including a baby Blue tongue lizard for Valentine’s day which we called “Valentine” and he gave me a baby crocodile for my birthday. Next thing you know I am up on stage in front of five hundred people doing a reptile show (even though I had never even spoken in public before) AND LOVED IT.  I love being in the public eye, being on stage teaching people about the importance of a balanced environment and I love my reptiles. 

                How long have you been doing this?
We  have been operating Croc Stars for fourteen years now

                What other positions have you held prior to this?
Legal Secretary - twenty years and typist - fourteen years.

Have you exhibited with these reptiles on TV?  If so, please tell us a little bit about that;
I was filmed on a show called “What’s up Downunder" while doing a reptile show at a holiday park at Port Stephens.  I was holding Valentine at the time and the host of the show pretended to have his finger bitten off. It was only a small piece on TV as the show was about the attractions at the Park.

               Have you done any/many media interviews?
I did an interview with my husband for an editorial in our local Central Coast newspaper and also an interview for an editorial in a newspaper in Queensland and one in Victoria.

                What do you enjoy doing in your ‘spare’ time?
I don’t have much spare time while working full time and running and working in Croc Stars as I also do typing in my own time as well,  but my passion is walking. I would love to travel extensively as a tourist but this will have to wait.

               What are your short and long term goals with your career?
          I wish to continue with my typing as I love it very much and, thanks to the Internet, I can do it at any time day, or night. Being able to have our own home is an important goal so we can build ponds and enclosures for our animals as we see fit. I hope to continue travelling with our reptile show for many years yet. 
Our dream is to travel to outback communities to entertain and educate people, perhaps a Government grant to cover our expenses as these communities miss out on so much and we feel we have a lot to offer them. I need help in this area as I don’t talk “Government-speak” and any attempt I have made at applying for a grant has not been successful. My long term goal is to retire on a small property 
somewhere and to travel on holidays but with the economy the way it is, that goal seems to get further and further away.

               Do you ever plan to do anything else as employment?
No plans at the present time, although if I were rich, I think “professional shopper” would be fun. 

             You travel a lot with your exhibitions.  Please tell us where you have been.  Nationwide and internationally?
We cannot take our reptiles out of Australia as, due to Quarantine laws, we would never be able to get them back in so no international travel.  We travel up to Hervey Bay in Queensland each year for a month (this enables me to visit my mum) and then we travel to East Gippsland in Victoria once a year for a week or so (so Derek can visit his mum) and then we do a month to five week tour throughout Victoria including country Victoria, ie Bendigo and Mildura  every year in September/October. Always happy to travel and hope to take in many more areas of Australia.

Who and/or what are your inspirations?
Definitely my husband.  He has been a huge influence on my attitude towards reptiles and the environment and trying to save same.  We like to stay positive and encourage each other.

                Is there anything further you would like to add to this interview?
Yes.  Even though I am fifty three years of age, I feel like I am thirty and that I hope to live to at least one hundred and thirty so I can fit in the things I want to do in my life time.

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