Chessington World of Adventures

Chessington, Surrey, KT9 2NE

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News Archive

Below are the news reports for Chessington World of Adventures, covering significant events concerning the animal collection, such as births, arrivals, departures, and deaths.

Chessington World of Adventures Details

Birth: 24 February 2012

A baby Western Lowland Gorilla has been born, to mum Asili and dad Damisi. The baby has yet to be named, and its sex won't be known for some time.

Arrival: November 2011

Two female Reindeer called Willow and Drizzle have arrived.

Arrival: 24 March 2011

A pair of Bonnethead (or Shovelhead) Sharks has arrived, to take up residence in a new exhibit in the Sea Life Centre.

Arrival: January 2011

Six male Dorcas Gazelles have arrived, to take up residence in the Wanyama Village & Reserve area opened last year.

Birth: July 2010

A baby female Scimitar-Horned Oryx called Mukisa has been born, to parents Olivia and Liam. They will live in the new Wanyama Village & Reserve area, along with other African species such as Grevy's Zebra and Sitatunga antelope.

Birth: December 2009

Births at the zoo this year not previously announced include Smeagol, a Ring-Tailed Lemur; Ayu, a Binturong; a Pygmy Marmoset; two Red-Handed Tamarins; two Spider Monkeys; a Red-Legged Seriema; 4 Otters; 4 Skunks; 4 Capybaras; 9 Mara; 6 Polecats; and 7 Meerkats.

Depart: 7 October 2009

Kabus, the Sumatran Tiger cub born last year, has moved to Belfast Zoo, where a female is expected to join him next year to form a new breeding pair for this critically endangered species.

Birth: 27 May 2009

A male Andean Condor chick has hatched and is being successfully reared by his parents, Quito and Chester. This makes him the first such chick to be parent reared in the UK for 12 years.

Death: 19 March 2009

Boris the Californian Sealion has sadly died at the grand old age (for a Sealion) of 28.

Birth: March 2009

A baby Western Lowland Gorilla has been born, to parents Buu and Damisi.

Update, 28 May: The baby has now been named Mbula.

Arrival: 14 February 2009

Watt, an 18-month old male Binturong, has arrived from Paris to join Sunti, the female that was born here a year ago.

Arrival: 30 May 2008

Damisi, the infamous dancing Gorilla, has arrived from Paignton Zoo, to join resident female Buu in a new breeding pair for the European Breeding Programme.

Birth: 20 February 2008

Two rare Sumatran Tiger cubs, called Kabus (male) and Kelabu (female), have been born to parents Ratna and Batu, and are their second set in two years. The smallest of the Tiger species, the Sumatran Tiger is highly endangered due to poaching and habitat loss, with less than 500 left in the wild on their native Indonesian island of Sumatra.

Birth: 28 January 2008

A baby female Binturong (also known as Bearcat) called Sunti has been born to parents Jelita and Awam. Unfortunately the cub has been rejected by her mother, and is being hand-reared by keepers. This is the first Binturong to be born in the UK for 10 years, and will be an important member of the European breeding programme for this endangered South East Asian species.

Depart: 23 January 2008

The three Sumatran Tiger cubs born at Chessington in 2006 have moved to Burger's Zoo in Holland.

Depart: 29 January 2007

Two female Californian Sealions are leaving to retire to Mundomar Marine and Exotic Animal Park in Benidorm, Spain. Pebbles (22) will leave on 30 Jan, and Ursa (15) will follow a few weeks later.

Arrive: 29 January 2007

A young male Californian Sealion called Hogan to join Chessington from Belfast Zoo

Birth: September 2006

Three female Sumatran Tiger cubs born to parents Ratna and Batu, their first litter. The parents were brought together about 2 years ago as part of the international breeding programme for this critically endangered species.

Depart: 30 August 2006

SpongeBob the Bolivian Squirrel Monkey is to move to Battersea Zoo, where he will join a breeding group of 5 females. The move is necessary because he has been rejected by the other Squirrel Monkeys following his return from theft in July. Although he was only gone for 3 days, the other 9 monkeys would not accept him back, and he has to be moved for his own safety.

Birth: 25 July 2006

Two Persian Leopard cubs born, to Shakira and Kalaf, their first litter. The parents are part of an international breeding programme for this highly endangered species, and the cubs are the first Persian Leopards born in the UK in 5 years.

Theft: 17 July 2006

`SpongeBob' the Bolivian Squirrel Monkey went missing, presumed stolen, following a break-in at the Monkey & Bird Garden. The other 9 monkeys were found in or near their enclosure. SpongeBob only joined the group 3 months ago, as part of a European Endangered Species Programme.

SpongeBob was returned 3 days later, having been handed in to Brixton Police Station by a member of the public who found him playing with some children in Clapham.

Arrival: June 2006

A mob of Meerkats have arrived in their desert-inspired enclosure, part of the newly-opened Creature Features area. This area also houses Wallabies, Rhea, Skunks, Rabbits and Guinea Pigs.

Birth: June 2006

Two Californian Sealion pups born, a week apart to separate mothers. They were both fathered by Boris, the oldest Sealion in Europe, and are his 39th and 40th!

Birth: May 2006

Four baby otters born to first time parents Guinevere and Lancelot.

One Striated Caracara (a type of hawk) chick born.

Two Red-Legged Seriema chicks born.

Birth: April 2006

Two male Capybaras born to first time parents Pili and Temo.

Open: March 2006

New for 2006 at Chessington is the interactive Monkey and Bird Garden, with `play `n learn' elements and a walk-through Squirrel Monkey enclosure.

Birth: July 2005

Female Californian Sealion pup called `Ocean' born. This is mother Pebbles' 11th and father Boris' 38th, believed to be a European record.

Birth: May 2005

Female Spider Monkey born to first time father Herby. Spider Monkeys are notoriously difficult to breed in captivity, and to celebrate the occasion, Chessingtion will be holding a special day of presentations, on Fathers Day, 19 June. Dads can also get free entry for the whole of June, using a voucher downloadable from the zoo's website.


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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