ZSL Whipsnade zoo counts them big and small!
Tuesday 15 January 2008
ZSL Whipsnade Zoo kicked off the New Year with its annual stocktake – counting all its animals to make sure the animal tally is correct.
All keepers took part in this huge exercise, taking a head count of more than 200 different species at the zoo. This year’s count includes an addition so large she is hard to miss – Leelee our Asian elephant who is coming up to her first birth.
Another huge addition was our Asian one-horned rhino calf, a male born to mother Beluki on Fireworks Night November 5th, while later the same month we welcomed a new and equally rare gaur calf.
It was a bumpy beginning for four two-humped Bactrian camels who sprung into life in May 2007 and who could forget our sealion pup Dominic, who made a big splash onto the scene in June last year. In addition, it was a record-breaking season for the rare corncrakes, which are bred at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo with more than 100 going off to be re-introduced to the wild at the Nene Washes. There were several scorpions crawling into the stock books – more than ever due to the mild autumn.
Every animal needed to be recorded from pythons and dwarf crocodiles to bongo and Egyptian tortoise – which had two young born during the year.
2008 promises to be a significant year for the zoo – cheetahs will be making a welcome return to the limelight with the opening of Cheetah Rock at Easter which will herald the launch of an exciting breeding programme for these charismatic animals. Ahead of that, Rhinos of Nepal will introduce our blossoming Asian one-horned rhinos to their fantastic new indoor home and of course there are many more expected births along the way.
Watch a video of the day: