Paignton Zoo

Paignton Zoo Hand Rears Chilean Flamingo Chick

Chick 5

A Chilean Flamingo chick is being hand-reared by zoo keepers after the egg was abandoned by its parents. Paignton Zoo Environmental Park is known for its flock of some 50 Chilean Flamingos that live by the entrance to the Devon zoo. 

Senior head bird keeper Peter Smallbones said, “The chick hatched on July 21, 2011. It is being kept warm in a brooder and fed every 3 hours. We lose eggs to seagulls and to clumsy-footed adult birds, so we take in abandoned eggs to make sure we have some youngsters.” In addition, there are currently two chicks with the flamingo flock on the island. 

Staff are using a syringe to feed the chick on a mixture of children’s porridge and fish. The Chilean flamingo (Phoenicopterus chilensis) comes from Chile but is also found in southern Peru, Bolivia, Uruguay, Paraguay, Argentina and southern Brazil, and can be found in brackish or saltwater lakes and lagoons. This large bird is classed as Near Threatened.

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Chick 6

Chick 7
Photo Credit: Paignton Zoo

A Trio of Fuzzy: Southern Screamer Chicks

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Three Southern Screamer chicks hatched at Paignton Zoo, UK, on May 13, 2011. The father of these chicks came to Paigntion Zoo from Paris in September 2006.The mother arrived at Paignton Zoo in December 2006 from Blackbrook Zoo in the UK.

The Southern Screamer mates for life (the bird is thought to live around 15 years). Courtship involves loud calling by both sexes; this can be heard some two miles away. They nest on a platform of reed and straw near water. The female lays up to seven white eggs. The pair share incubation duties, which takes around 46 days. Chicks leave the nest as soon as they hatch, but the parents care for them for several weeks. The fledging period takes 8 to 14 weeks. Southern Screamers are native to South America.

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Photo Credit: Ray Wiltshire

Meerkat Kits at Paignton Zoo!

Meerkat CU
About a month ago, these tiny Meerkat kits were born at Paignton Zoo in the UK. In these pictures they are about 10 days old.

The babies were born to mum Aurora and dad Kang. A Meerkat mother usually has two to five young, usually once a year, after a gestation period of 11 weeks. Kits come into the world with eyes and ears closed and are sparsely furred. Various adults will baby-sit the youngsters while the mother feeds. 

Group meerkats

Mom kits

The kits are now old enough to be seen on exhibit, and will be a part of the Zoo's Meerkat Encounters. Senior keeper Andrew Fry said: “We take visitors in to meet the mob and talk about their habits and their characteristics, then let people help out at feeding time. The pups are keen to get in on the act!”

A web camera has now been set up overlooking the meerkat enclosure. To view this, go to:

Older meerkat
Photo Credit: Ray Wiltshire

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World’s Largest Rodent Born at Paignton Zoo

On August 18th, the UK's Paignton Zoo welcomed a baby Capybara to parents David and Davina. Sometimes called a the Giant Guinea Pig, these massive rodents can grow four feet long (a rodent of unusual size perhaps?). Capybaras love to lounge, and even sleep, in swamps and rivers with only their eyes and nostrils poking out.

Baby capybara Paignton Zoo 1

Baby capybara Paignton Zoo 1

Baby capybara Paignton Zoo 1

Family portrait

Baby capybara Paignton Zoo 1

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It's a Mouse... It's a Deer... It's a Mouse Deer!

A tiny deer at Paignton Zoo has given birth just months after she lay critically ill on the operating table. A long and complicated illness required the tiny lesser Malay mouse deer to undergo multiple rounds of general anaesthesia and surgery. Due to the hard work of zoo vets and a little luck, the tiny deer overcame it's illness and on June 19th gave birth to an even tinier little fawn. Mouse deer are the smallest members of the animal family that includes pigs, hippos, camels, deer, antelopes, sheep and goats. Adults are 45 to 55 centimetres long (18 to 22 inches) and can live for about 12 years.




Rare Baby Antelope Born White as a Sheet

A rare white antelope has been born at Paignton Zoo. The Kafue Flats lechwe calf was born on Sunday 23rd May. She is the first white lechwe born at Paignton Zoo in over 20 years. Her keepers have named her Sethunya, meaning blossom, because of the hawthorn blossom around the paddock. Paignton Zoo spokesperson Phil Knowling said: “The lechwe are shy animals in a large paddock and she is very small, so she may be difficult to see - but she is white so she does stand out. She is a naturally-occurring curiosity – and very lovely!" The youngster’s coloring is due to a double recessive gene that only occurs in females. She is not a true albino as her eyes are blue not pink.



Sittin pretty


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A Big Wobbly Baby at the Paignton Zoo

Paignton Zoo's new baby giraffe was born the morning of Feb. 24th. Delicate but nearly 6 feet tall, the as yet unnamed male calf was born to mother Janica and father Yoda after a nearly 16 month long gestation period. He is the pair’s first youngster. Curator of Mammals Neil Bemment said: “We are ecstatic with the new arrival. We hope he will grow up big and strong like his dad.”




Shy Maned Wolf Pups at Paignton Zoo

The UK's Paignton Zoo recently welcomed three little Maned Wolf pups to mother wolf Maya and father Smolis. Shy and elusive, Maned Wolves are hard to see in the wild and are often bashful in captivity as well. South America's largest wolf, this species lives in monogamous pairs rather than in packs like other wolf species.

Maned wolf pup paignton zoo 1 rs

Maned wolf pup paignton zoo 2 rs

Maned wolf pup paignton zoo 3 rs

Maned wolf pup paignton zoo 3 rs2Photo credits: Ray Wiltshire

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