The world’s largest amphibian makes London debut

Chinese giant salamander arrives at ZSL London Zoo (3)

© ZSL London Zoo

This unusual looking creature hasn’t had the easiest start in life. It is one of the most Critically Endangered amphibian’s in the world, but was discovered in a cereal box by UK Border Force agents as someone¬†attempted to illegally smuggle him and three others into the country. Today, this Chinese giant salamander Continue reading

Saving the endangered ibis four young birds at a time

This week four endangered northern bald ibis, who were bred at ZSL London Zoo, were safely transported to Spain. This is where they will soon be released as part of a special conservation project, which is helping reintroduce these unique looking birds to Europe.

Northern bald ibis 3 (c) ZSL London Zoo

ZSL London Zoo

The quartet – who were lovingly nicknamed Iris, Indigo, Igor and Ivan by the zoo’s keepers – hatched last year. On 20 February, they travelled to Southern Spain’s Jerez Zoo where they will learn how to be wild before being released in Andalucia.

The species vanished from Europe almost 300 years ago. It’s now believed that there are just 600 northern bald ibis left in the world, reduced to one small part of Morocco (and two breeding pairs in Syria) where they are threatened by habitat loss, hunters and pesticides.

“We’re really hopeful that they’ll go on to breed in the wild – ultimately securing the future of the species” said Paul Atkin, ZSL London Zoo’s bird keeper.

To find out more about the northern bald ibis, head to birdlife.org

ZSL welcomes baby tamandua!

On 31 May, London Zoo announced that they’d recently had a surprise arrival at the zoo. Meet Poco – the tiny tamandua.

Tamandua baby (c) ZSL London Zoo 1

Tamandua baby (c) ZSL London Zoo

Poco was born to proud parents Ria and Tobi (who only moved to the zoo last October as a hopeful companion). Keepers welcomed the newborn’s arrival, which took place just five months after the pair of tamanduas had been introduced. The cute Easter arrival clung to Ria’s fur but now, at two months old, Poco is beginning to venture away to explore the Rainforest Life home.

Tamanduas are nocturnal creatures, native to South America. Part of the anteater family, these mammals are impressive climbers and have tongues that can grow up to 40cm long. This species has very small eyes and poor vision, so relies on its hearing and strong sense of smell.

Tamandua baby (c) ZSL London Zoo 2

Tamandua baby (c) ZSL London Zoo