Friday, 15 September 2017

New Keeper: Millie


Welcome to our newest member of the keeper team... Millie.

Millie has just joined us to help with all the daily routines and looking after the many groups that come to see the animals. She has recently graduated from Plumpton College where she studied Animal Management, and is now looking forward to getting stuck in to a career working with animals.

I am sure you will all make Millie feel welcome when you see her around the Centre.

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Red Squirrels to Caldey Island


We have had another successful year with our red squirrels this year, several litters of kittens born in our off display pens and at our other holders sites. As with all out kittens, we redistribute them around our breeding group, and then look at the possibility of re-introducing them out in to the wild.

This year we have several kittens that can be sent to the wild, and as with our previous releases, we are continuing with the idea of introducing them to islands where there are no grey squirrels to affect them.



Last week we sent a dozen squirrels over to Caldey Island in Pembrokeshire. These, along with a few others from previous years, we are hoping will settle and mimic the success we have had on other islands such as Tresco.

So far so good, and hopefully we will be able to share with you news of how they are doing over the winter.

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Photo of the month: August 2017

"Eagle owl" by Tony Walker

August is the only month of the year that we are open to the general public every day, and it has been a busy month this year... Lot's of people coming to see us, and lots of you bringing your cameras.

It has been a real mix of animal photos that we have seen over the past month, our new weasels being arguably the most photographed, but it is this beautiful photograph or Ethel our eagle owl which we have chosen for photo of the month. Captured by Tony Walker.

Tony's photo will be in our gallery next year, and he will be in with the chance of winning a photo day here at the Centre if his pictured is picked out by our professional judge at the end of the year.

See a few more pictures below, and as always you can click on the names to see more photographs taken by these photographers.


"Weasel" by Linda Kent

"Weasel on watch" by Lillian

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Goodbye to Rich


Last week we said goodbye to one of our keepers, Richard. Rich arrived for his third spell of work here about a year and a half ago, but has been with us on and off in between his many travels around the world, for the past ten years.

Rich has been a valued member of our keeping team over the years, and has helped the Centre to continue to grow and inspire many visitors about the wildlife living all around us... including his favourite, the tabby cats... er, I mean, Wildcats.

Rich has now decided it is time to move on and further his career, learn new skills, and pass on his knowledge to a new audience. He is going back to college! But this time as a lecturer to train young aspiring students in animal handling.

We all wish you the very best Rich, don't forget about British wildlife, and maybe bring your future groups to the Centre to show them around.

Friday, 25 August 2017

Summer Update


It has been a busy old summer for us this year, lots of visitors, lots of young animals around, lots of new changes taking place or at least planned for the future and new faces around the place helping to look after it all.

We have had a very successful year in terms of baby animals, and it may not be over yet... we have just started to introduce our new weasels together in the hope that they may have a late litter this year, and once again we have put our pine martens together in the hopes of kits next spring!



Our current youngsters are all doing extremely well. We have been able to extend our releases on our reserve this year with both the harvest mice and water voles. Red squirrels are in preparation for their release in the autumn as are our two litters of polecats. Plus many more little ones being the centre of attention with the visitors, including our new baby adders and still a favourite our otter cubs from the end of last year... Dolores and Bernard.



We have plenty of plans of for the future too, many of which we hope to put in place over this coming winter. A lot of general up keep, but a few new things for you to see too. We will keep you updated with progress of course, but one thing you probably have seen already if you have visited in recent weeks is the extension to our badger sett.

We are extending the outside part of their run by double the size, and giving them access to it via a tunnel under the walkway. This will give them a lot more space, and allow us to introduce the cubs to our main group. At the moment it looks a bit like a building site, but in a couple of weeks it will be landscaped and grassed with a few small trees planted. After some time for it to all take and settle, it will be opened up for the cubs.

Oh and how could I forget, another new venture coming soon...


video

"It's virtual reality, it's the future!" David F Mills