A very special new arrival at Marwell Zoo
An endangered female Amur tiger is the latest arrival at Marwell Zoo in Hampshire. Ann Evans has the details.
Valentina, an endangered female Amur tiger arrived at Marwell Zoo in Hampshire on 10th December, travelling to the 140-acre wildlife park from Hodonin Zoo in the Czech Republic. Staff at Marwell are hopeful that she will be a companion for the wildlife park’s male tiger Bagai.
Amur tigers, found in the Russian far east and north-eastern China, are endangered with less than 500 believed to remain in the wild due to extensive habitat loss and poaching.
Ian Goodwin, Animal Collection Manager at Marwell, said: “We are excited to welcome Valentina to Marwell. She’s settling into her new home well and she’s had some positive interaction with Bagai with lots of sniffing and chuffing through the fence. Valentina is a young animal and we hope one day that she may mother cubs to help secure the future of this species.”
Marwell Zoo, is home to more than 140 species including snow leopards, white rhinos, Rothschild’s giraffe, penguins, meerkats, cheetah, black and white ruffed Lemur, Arabian Oryx, Tamarins, flamingos and many other fascinating and endangered species. The zoo is owned by Marwell Wildlife, a global conservation charity leading programmes in the UK, Africa and across the world.
This year has been particularly hard for the zoo with the closures due to Covid19 pandemic, as Marwell’s Chief Executive James Cretney, explained: “Even when the zoo is closed, our daily costs remain incredibly high as the responsibility of looking after our animals to the highest standard does not change.”
“We’re undoubtedly facing our toughest challenge in our nearly 50-year history. Since March we’ve lost more than £4million in revenue due to the pandemic and each month it costs us more than £220,000 just to care for our resident animals. We are a charity and our wider conservation work, both here in the UK and overseas also needs to continue. Many people and projects depend upon us.
“The best way to support us is to come and visit us this winter. The zoo just isn’t the same without the buzz of families making memories together and we can’t wait to welcome everyone soon.”
There is always lots going on for families to enjoy, and until 21st February 2021 you can see their larger-than-life brick adventure, ‘Supersized!’ You will discover 30 models of curious real-life creatures all supersized to enormous proportions using more than two million toy bricks. And for a festive twist, they’ve shrunk 10 tiny brick reindeers around the trail for a festive hide and seek! See if you can find them all.
As a conservation charity simply by visiting Marwell Zoo you will be giving something back this Christmas to ensure that future generations can experience the joy of coming to the zoo and helping their amazing projects to conserve habitats and species in the UK and around the world.
Please double check Government restrictions before visiting. Marwell Zoo is currently in Tier 2, so please do not visit if you’re in Tier 3 or 4. Book online at: www.marwell.org.uk