Sunshine after the rain at ZSL London Zoo
Tuesday 7 August 2007
Two more animals for the ‘ark in the park’ after heavy rains, Two birds living in separate enclosures at ZSL London Zoo laid eggs simultaneously after nine unfruitful years – and keepers believe the occurrence was triggered by the recent downpours.
The Zoo’s two female tawny frogmouths, Rita and Tig, who live yards apart in separate enclosures, both laid their eggs on the same day after a particularly wet weekend. They have now hatched a fluffy chick each – welcome additions to the Zoo’s extensive bird collection.
In the wild, tawny frogmouths are believed to coincide their breeding season with the rains, laying their eggs immediately after monsoon season so they have an abundance of insects to rear their chicks on. Keepers are convinced the recent deluges are responsible for the timing of the two new chicks.
The pair are now doing well and keepers are delighted with the Zoo’s adorable new residents, naming them Thunder and Storm in tribute to Britain’s sopping start to summer.
Zoo staff hope the arrival of Thunder and Storm will signal the end of London’s rainy days - they’ve certainly brought some sunshine to the Zoo.
Senior bird keeper, Adrian Walls, said: “We are delighted with our wonderful twin success, needless to say we didn’t think the wet weather would have such surprising result. We think their arrival was triggered by the heavy rains here and we’ve called them Thunder and Storm in tribute to the dreadful weather.”
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Notes to editors
Image of Tig the tawny frogmouth with her new chick, Storm, available from Emma Kenly, 020 7449 6280 or firstname.lastname@example.org
With their nocturnal habit and owl-like appearance, Tawny Frogmouths are often confused with owls, but are actually more closely related to the nightjars.
The Tawny Frogmouth is found throughout Australia, including Tasmania. It can be seen in almost any habitat type except the denser rainforests and treeless deserts.
Tawny Frogmouth's eat invertebrates, small mammals, reptiles, frogs and birds. Food is usually obtained by pouncing to the ground from a tree or other elevated perch.
Founded in 1826, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is an international scientific, conservation and educational charity: our key role is the conservation of animals and their habitats. The society runs ZSL London Zoo and ZSL Whipsnade Zoo carries out scientific research in the Institute of Zoology and is actively involved in field conservation in other countries worldwide.
Contact: Emma Kenly
Tel: 020 7449 6280