OUR HISTORY

Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park grew out of the childhood dreams of Founder and Director Michael Johnson.

Michael imagined a place where people could experience the rare and unusual animals that roam the Australian bush.  Moonlit Sanctuary is that place.

Each animal has been hand-picked to fulfill Michael’s lifelong plan to help halt the rapid extinction of animal species in Australia.

As a child, Michael collected creatures in his suburban Melbourne backyard, with his school yearbook even quoting his future ambitions as “wanting to help animals.”  An avid reader, he was inspired by Gerald Durrell, a famed British naturalist, conservationist and zookeeper. Durrell’s writings fascinated and captured the hearts and minds of animal lovers worldwide and Michael was not immune.

In 1996 Michael travelled to the Durrell Foundation’s Conservation Academy in Jersey which had been at the forefront of wildlife preservation for decades.  There he took take part in an endangered species breeding course for conservation professionals.

The Johnson family purchased a 25 acre property formerly a farm and pony club, in Pearcedale on the beautiful Mornington Peninsula.