Trust rears rare Devon species

Authored by Paigntonzoo
Posted: Fri, 07/18/2014 - 10:35am

A Devon conservation charity has taken another step to help save a threatened native species.

The Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust, based at Paignton Zoo, has teamed up with the Environment Agency and Buglife to rear white-clawed crayfish.

The white-clawed crayfish (Austropotamobius pallipes) is one of the largest freshwater invertebrates in the UK but is under threat of extinction in the wild because of the introduced North American signal crayfish, which out-competes its British counterpart for food and carries a killer plague.

Rare Bat Project wins Funding

Authored by Huw Oxburgh
Posted: Tue, 04/01/2014 - 4:56pm

Conservationists have been awarded funding to develop plans to protect a rare species of bat in Devon.

The funding secured by Devon Wildlife Trust from the Heritage Lottery Fund for will go towards a project protecting the Greater Horseshoe Bat.

The project plan to be developed over the next 12 months by the Greater Horseshoe Bat Partnership could then see a further £750,000 in long-term funding.

Paignton Zoo staff save tiny rare baby

Authored by Paigntonzoo
Posted: Wed, 03/19/2014 - 10:46am

Dedicated keepers at Paignton Zoo are caring for a rare baby that weighed little more than a CD at birth.

The pygmy slow loris – which weighed just 22 grams when it was born - was one of twins born to a first-time mother. One twin did not survive, and keepers stepped in to save the other when its mother abandoned it.

For the first night head mammal keeper Craig Gilchrist slept in an office in the Zoo, feeding the minute youngster every couple of hours. It was given SMA gold cap milk replacer using a 1ml syringe and a small rubber teat.

Rare Devon Bird Rescued From Extinction

Authored by Huw Oxburgh
Posted: Tue, 03/18/2014 - 4:21pm

A rare South Devon Bird has been rescued from the brink of extinction following an EU-funded recovery programme.

The cirl bunting, native to South Devon, almost died out 25 years ago having falling to just over 100 pairs in 1989 due to the lack of food and nesting sites.

Now following an extensive recovery programme to protect their environments bankrolled by the European Rural Development stewardship fund numbers are making a steady return with just under 1000 pairs estimated to live in the South Devon area.

Rare frog found after three year search

Authored by Paigntonzoo
Posted: Tue, 03/18/2014 - 10:00am

A Devon conservation charity has found a rare African frog after a painstaking search lasting three years.

The Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust, which runs Paignton Zoo, Living Coasts in Torquay and Newquay Zoo in Cornwall, carries out fieldwork with rare amphibians in the mountains of Eastern Tanzania.

The work is funded by zoo visitors and supporters and carried out with the charity’s partners, Manchester Metropolitan University and Museo delle Scienze, Trento, Italy.

Torquay is a fertile breeding ground

Authored by Paigntonzoo
Posted: Tue, 11/19/2013 - 11:01am

A Devon zoo is the best in Europe for breeding some key species. And it’s partly down to its location – in Torquay.

Living Coasts is the best among top animal collections for breeding species such as African penguins, blue spotted stingrays and Inca terns. Its coastal position is one of the keys to its success.

Vote for your favourite school gorilla

Authored by Paigntonzoo
Posted: Thu, 10/24/2013 - 11:39am

Babbacombe Model Village is hosting a popularity contest – for small gorillas.

It’s all part of Paignton Zoo’s Great Gorillas Project. More than 20 gorilla models designed and created by schools from across the region will gather at the Model Village over half term.

Visitors will be able to vote for their favourite. The winning school will receive free visits to both Paignton Zoo and Babbacombe Model Village. Children will be allowed to vote for their own gorilla.

East Devon caravan park wins conservation award

Authored by Huw Oxburgh
Posted: Wed, 10/09/2013 - 1:30pm

A Caravan Park in East Devon has won awards for its conservation work for a 17th year running.

The Oakdown Touring and Holiday Caravan Park run by the Franks family runs a number of environmental initives to keep the park friendly to the environment

Recently they installed top of the range solor panels and a lighting system in the which reduces energy use by 90%.

Oakdown won one of the first Professor David Bellamy conservation awards in 1997 and has maintained this award ever since.

George the (royal?) gorilla

Authored by Paigntonzoo
Posted: Tue, 10/01/2013 - 1:34pm

Children at a hospice in Devon are proud that their hand-painted gorilla shares his name with the royal baby.

The gorilla, part of Paignton Zoo’s Great Gorillas Project, was created by children at Children’s Hospice South West and named George.

Naomi Dymond, from Children’s Hospice South West, said: “Kate has an affiliation with the hospice movement, but we never thought she’d name her baby after our gorilla!” The Duchess of Cambridge visited a hospice in Hampshire as part of Children’s Hospice Week 2013.

Volunteers needed to help conserve the East Devon countryside

Authored by Mary Youlden
Posted: Mon, 09/23/2013 - 9:50am

As the summer draws to a close our rangers in East Devon are starting to plan the practical habitat management tasks for nature conservation over the winter, including hedge-laying, scrub clearance and coppicing.

They are looking for people to join their team of volunteers who carry out this work. No experience is necessary as full training will be given and all tools are provided. A love for the countryside and ability to work outdoors, sometimes in the rain, is all they ask for.