Bristol Zoo Gardens

Clifton, Bristol, Avon BS8 3HA

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News Archive

Below are the news reports for Bristol Zoo Gardens, covering significant events concerning the animal collection, such as births, arrivals, departures, and deaths.

Bristol Zoo Gardens Details

Birth: July 2012

Four more baby Meerkats have been born, joining the 7 others born earlier this year.

Birth: July 2012

A baby Ring-tailed Lemur has been born, to mum Roxy. The baby is still too young to have been sexed, and thus named, and can often be seen clinging to mum on the Lemur garden walk-through exhibit.

Birth: July 2012

Other recent births include a baby Golden Lion Tamarin, several Blue Poison Arrow Dart Frogs and Yellow-banded Dart Frogs, 8 Flamingo chicks, 45 Lovebirds, a Mindanao Bleeding Heart Dove, 4 Rainbow Lorikeets, and Azure-winged Magpie, 3 Keas, 3 Little Egrets, and 2 critically endangered Bali Starlings.

Birth: June 2012

A male baby Pudu, the world's smallest species of deer, has been born

Birth: April 2012

A group of over 140 baby Antilles Pink-toed Bird-eating Spiders have hatched. This breeding success means that the Zoo now has the tools for breeding the more endangered species of arachnid in the future.

Birth: April 2012

Two baby African Pancake Tortoises have hatched

Birth: 8 March 2012

Meerkat triplets have been born and are now 3 weeks old. They have been named Timon, Pumbaa and Rafiki and are as yet too young to be sexed.

Birth: 15 February 2012

Sid the Linne's Two-Toed Sloth, who was born last April, has now re-joined her mother on-show in Twilight World. She had to be hand-reared by keepers after her mother Light Cap fell ill shortly after giving birth. Although Light Cap made a full recovery, she was by then no longer producing enough milk for her baby.

Birth: 2 February 2012

Five baby Gila Monsters have hatched, only the second time this species, one of the few venomous lizards, has been bred at the zoo.

Birth: 19 January 2012

Nine baby Ocellated Freshwater Stingrays, known as pups, have been born. The mothers, Catalina and Genevieve, are sisters and arrived from Weston Seaquarium last year. They have been removed from the display tank to keep them safe from predation by its other occupants. They will be re-homed once bigger and stronger.

Birth: 21 December 2011

A baby Goeldi's Monkey has been born, the fourth for it's parents and the second this year.

Arrival: 8 December 2011

Two venomous Black Widow spiders have arrived, having been discovered in a 1964 Ford Falcon car that had been imported from California. They were only discovered when the car was stripped down for restoration. One of the spiders is now on show in Bug World, replacing the zoo's previous Black Widow that died (of old age) in October; the other is being kept off-show.

Arrival: 1 November 2011

Seventeen baby Utila Spiny-Tailed Iguanas have hatched, the first at the Zoo for this Critically Endangered species, once considered one of the rarest of Iguana species. The parents arrived last year as a new breeding pair for the European breeding programme.

Birth: 27 September 2011

A baby Western Lowland Gorilla named Kukena (pronounced "Kookenga") has been born, to mother Salome, her third. Her previous baby, Komale, was born in December 2006 after fertility treatment, but this time Kukena was conceived naturally. Jock, the zoo's silverback, is father to both.

Update, 30 November: Kukena is now known to be a boy.

Arrival: 31 August 2011

Two 5-year-old female Stingrays, sisters, have arrived from Weston Seaquarium in the hope that they will breed with the resident male Gamma. The species is native to the Amazon river, and these will share their tank with other South American species.

Birth: 18 August 2011

A total of 9 Greater Flamingo chicks have hatched in the last few weeks, the largest number the Zoo has ever had in a single year, and bringing the flock size to 38. Two of the older ones are being hand-reared after being abandoned by their parents.

Arrival: 27 June 2011

A male Red Panda called Sir Ed ahs arrived from Wellington Zoo, New Zealand, to join resident Jasmina in the hope that they will form a new breeding pair. They are both 3 years old.

Birth: 6 June 2011

Baby Golden Lion Tamarin twins have been born, the second set for their parents in less than a year. This is great news for this highly endangered species, which was downgraded from "Critically Endangered" to just "Endangered" on the IUCN Red List in 2003 following the success of the international breeding programme and reintroduction of captive-bred animals to the wild. The wild population has recovered from around 400 in the 1970s to around 1000 today, and it is hoped that there will be 2000 by 2025.

Birth: 1 June 2011

A baby South American Fur Seal has been born to mother Nina.

Birth: April 2011

A baby Linne's (or Southern) Two-Toed Sloth called Sidone (Sid for short) has been born to mum Light Cap and dad Rio. The youngster is believed to be female, but Sloths are difficult to sex. Light Cap was taken ill shortly after giving birth but despite making a full recovery was then no longer able to produce enough milk. Sid is therefore being hand-reared (off-show) by keepers.

Birth: January 2011

A baby male Brazilian Tapir has been born to parents Tamand and Denzil.

Birth: 24 December 2010

A pair of Asiatic Lion cubs, a boy and a girl, have been born to first time mum Shiva and dad Kamal. These are the first Lion cubs for the Zoo in nearly 10 years, and are great news for this Critically Endangered species.

Update, 4 May: They have now been named Jayendra ("lord of victory") and Kalyana ("beautiful"), or Jay and Kaly (pronounced "Kally") for short.

Arrival: 13 August 2010

Three Aldabra Giant Tortoises (a male and two females, Hogarth, Hissy and Stevie) have arrived on breeding loan, to join the zoo's existing male (Biggie) and three females (Twiggy, Helen and Matilda).

Arrival: 9 August 2010

Five Malayan Box Turtles have arrived, having been seized by customs in Hong Kong while being smuggled into China. Once their quarantine period is over, they will join the zoo's three other turtles of the same species, who were also confiscated by customs officials 10 years ago. It is hoped they will form a breeding group for this Vulnerable species.

Birth: August 2010

Golden Lion Tamarin twins have been born, the first at the zoo and great news for the breeding programme for this Endangered species.

Arrival: 26 July 2010

A 5-year-old Asiatic Lioness called Shiva has arrived from Besancon Zoo in France, to join Kamal the resident male. It is hoped they will form a new breeding pair for this Critically Endangered species - there are only bout 350 left in the wild..

Birth: June 2010

A South American Fur Seal pup has been born, to parents Mary and Otari. It has not yet been sexed, and therefore named.

Birth: June 2010

Four Marbled Teal ducklings have hatched,, and are being hand reared by keepers.

Birth: 25 May 2010

The first four Prairie Dog pups to be born this year have now emerged from their burrows. More are expected to follow in the coming weeks.

Death: 19 May 2010

Moti, the 15-year-old Asiatic Lioness has sadly had to be put down, due to an extensive disease of her reproductive tract that was seriously affecting her health. It is hoped that a new lioness will arrive in the summer to join Kamal and continue the breeding programme for this Critically Endangered species.

Birth: April 2010

Fifteen Partula faba Tree Snails have been born. This colony of 88 snails is the only one in the world; the species is extinct in the wild, due to the introduction of other snail species to its native French Polynesian island of Raiatea and loss of habitat.

Birth: March 2010

A baby White-Faced Saki Monkey has been born, to parents Zebedee and Rio.

Birth: March 2010

Two baby Meerkats have been born.

Birth: 18 February 2010

A baby Black Howler Monkey has been born, to parents MacGinty and Amarello.

Birth: February 2010

A baby Owl Monkey (aka Douroucouli) has been born.

Birth: May 2009

A baby female Ring-Tailed Lemur has been born, to parents Roxy and Snout.

Arrival: 13 February 2009

A young female Aldabran Giant Tortoise called Matilda has arrived from London Zoo, to join the existing male Biggie in the hope that they will breed.

Birth: February 2009

Fifteen baby Dragon Fish have been born, the first time this highly endangered species has successfully bred in Europe.

Birth: 29 January 2009

A baby male Black Howler Monkey called Darwin has been born, to parents MacGinty and Amarillo.

Birth: January 2009

A baby Malagasy Giant Jumping Rat has been born. Good news for this highly endangered species, which is predicted to be extinct in the wild within 24 years, if the current rate of decline continues. The species is threatened by habitat loss and predation.

Arrival: September 2008

A young, orphaned female Gorilla called Kera has arrived from Wilhelma Zoo, Germany, where she has been hand-reared.

Arrival: August 2008

A Six-Banded Armadillo called Archie has arrived, and will join the daily `Amazing Animals' displays.

Birth: July 2008

A baby Chinese (or Yellow-Margined) Box Turtle has hatched. Good news for this Endangered species.

Birth: May 2008

A female baby Ring-tailed Lemur called Warbie has been born, to mum Roxy.

Birth: April 2008

A baby male Southern Pudu has been born to parents Bramble and Demitrio. This is the smallest deer species and is classified as vulnerable, due to habitat loss in their native lowland temperate rainforests of Chile and south-west Argentina.

Birth: March 2008

Three baby Meerkats have been born, two boys and a girl.

Arrival: 29 February 2008

A male Asiatic Lion called Kamal has arrived from Twycross Zoo, to replace the zoo's existing male Lion, Chandra, who has moved to Cotswold Wildlife Park (to replace their male who died in November). These moves have been coordinated by the European breeding programme for this species, which is critically endangered with only about 350 left in the wild.

Birth: 25 December 2007

A baby Greater Malay Mouse Deer has been born, good news for the breeding programme for this endangered species.

Arrival: 28 November 2007

A pair of Agile Gibbons, known as `Kings of the Swingers', have arrived. Duana, the 7-year-old female came from Fota Wildlife Park in Cork, Ireland and Samuel the 11-year-old male came from Twycross Zoo. It is hoped they will become an active part of the European breeding programme.

Birth: 23 November 2007

A baby Aye Aye called Raz (short for Razafindraniatsimaniry!) has been born. He is being hand-reared by keepers and doing well, but will not be weaned and returned to his mother on show in Twilight World for several months. This strange-looking nocturnal primate species is endangered in its native Madagascar due to habitat loss and hunting.

Birth: October 2007

Three baby Squirrel Monkeys have been born, to separate mothers.

Birth: 15 December 2006

Baby Western Lowland Gorilla born following ground-breaking fertility treatment. The baby is a boy, now named Komale, and was born to parents Jock and Salome.

Open/Arrival: 22 August 2006

The lemur garden of the Monkey Jungle exhibit is now open. This offers visitors the opportunity to walk among ring-tailed and red ruffed lemurs in a naturalistic setting. Two new female ring-tailed lemurs also arrived from Twycross Zoo to join the existing group of 2 males and 2 females.

Open: 14 July 2006

Official opening of the new Monkey Jungle exhibit. This features new naturalistic enclosures for the howler monkeys, lion-tailed macaques, and de Brazza's monkeys, along with a walk-through enclosure for ring-tailed and red ruffed lemurs.

Birth: 26 June 2006

Eleven flamingo chicks hatched from eggs supplied (on permanent loan) by Slimbridge. They are currently being hand-reared but have already joined the existing flock in a refurbished enclosure that features a walk-through path fro visitors.

Birth: June 2006

Two new fur seal pups, Tia and Bonita, were born to separate mothers on 4 June and 21 May, respectively. Bonita was born prematurely, and has had to be hand-reared.

Birth: 23 April 2006

Female Brazilian Tapir calf born, the second successful birth for the parents. The Brazilian Tapir is an endangered species, and the new calf is the result of a co-ordinated breeding programme.

Birth: 12 August 2005

20 baby Meller's giant chameleons successfully hatched, and are the offspring of four adult chameleons rescued by Customs & Excise at Heathrow airport. The babies will stay at the zoo until old enough to be moved to other zoos.

Birth: 17 May 2005

Baby western lowland gorilla born to Romina, the first adult Gorilla to be given a cataract operation in Europe.

Depart: 21 March 2005

2 red panda cubs, born at the zoo in June 2003, have recently moved to a new home at Birmingham Nature Centre, in support of the conservation breeding programme for this highly endangered species.

Birth: 11 February 2005

Female Aye-Aye born, the first to be captive bred and hand reared in the UK. The Aye-Aye, a type of Lemur, is the largest nocturnal primate in the world, and one of the strangest mammals.

Birth: 10 February 2005

Male Brazilian Tapir calf born, the first for its parents.


Where possible, the dates given are for the event itself, but some zoos do not make this information available, when the date of announcement is used instead.

Seasons: Winter = Jan - Mar, Spring = Apr - Jun, Summer = Jul - Sept, Autumn = Oct - Dec.

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