Noah's News Blog

Tortoise Hatchlings

 

We have welcomed some super cute new arrivals to the Noah’s Ark Zoo family over December and January. Five tiny leopard tortoises have hatched from incubation in our Reptile House, causing excitement among our animal team who love it when our animals breed successfully.


Did you know?
The leopard tortoise is areptilenative to Southern and Eastern Africa and can live from 50 to 100 years, so our hatchlings have a long life ahead of them! They are one of the world’s largest species growing up to 70cm in length, but right now our hatchlings are just a little bigger than a 50p coin.

TortoiseThese tortoises can lay 5 to 100 eggs in a clutch (this is the term used for eggs laid by amphibians and reptiles); our leopard tortoise parents laid 14 eggs between them, so we may be seeing more arrivals over the coming weeks!


Where are the hatchlings now?
As the hatchlings are so young and vulnerable, it is important that our reptile keepers are able to keep a close eye on them. Due to their size the hatchlings can become cold very quickly, so their enclosure must maintain a temperature of around 27°C. The hatchlings are currently in an off show enclosure to ensure this can be regulated easily by the reptile keepers. Once they have grown a little more, they will then be on show to the public, so stay tuned for news!

Tortoise Hatchlings
Come and visit the proud parents!
In the meantime, the five leopard tortoise parents are on show to the public and can be found in their mixed-exhibit next to the gibbons. In our creep (a group of tortoises) of leopard tortoises we have one male (Terry) and four females (Topsy, Turvy, Maggie-May and Gwen). Also in the same enclosure we have one African spur tortoise and eight ring tailed lemurs. Mixed exhibits such as this one provide enrichment for our animals through their interactions with one another. We are often lucky enough to capture this on camera, as you can see in this video!

 

New Attractions

 

If you’ve been up to Noah’s Ark this year you may have notice we’ve made some rather large changes around the zoo! We’ve started the 2017 season with new catering facilities and a shiny new slide for visitors to enjoy.


Food Barn
Say ‘hello’ to the smart new interior of our Food Barn, as well as a completely revamped menu and new opening hours! You can now grab yourself a cup of freshly ground coffee to warm up at the end of your visit (which may be well needed throughout winter!), or get a takeaway coffee to enjoy whilst wandering around the zoo.

Cafe


The new menu has something to suit everyone; from freshly made sandwiches to homemade pizza. We also have a fantastic kids menu to keep your little ones happy. Take a look at the selection available in our Menu.


You can now also enjoy breakfast at Noah’s Ark! If you’re visiting for one of our Keeper Experiences, why not drop into the Food Barn for breakfast after your early morning start? The Food Barn is now opening at 8am for those who need an early morning caffeine hit!


Rainbow Slide
There’s so much fun to be had at Noah’s Ark Zoo already, but if you need that extra rush of adrenaline we’ve got a treat for you! You may have loved our old Rainbow Slide, but you’ll now notice that it has been replaced with an upgrade which is bigger, faster and more exciting than ever!

Rainbow Slide


The new slide is 6.6 meters of multi-coloured fun that is sure to please young thrill-seekers. You can find the new slide in the same place as before, in our indoor play barn behind the Ark Arena. Grab yourself a sack and see if you’re brave enough to take a trip down the Rainbow Slide!

 

 

Help save the giraffe in 2017!

 

Giraffe lovers, listen up! The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has announced that these wonderful tall-necked, long-tongued creatures have gone from being a species of ‘least concern’ to ‘vulnerable to extinction’.

This change in classification has happened because the giraffe population has decreased by nearly 40% in the last 30 years – dropping from an estimated 163,452 in 1985 to 97,500 in 2015.

This is an issue close to our heart because at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm we have our own herd of giraffes – fondly known as Gerald, Genevieve, George and Geoffrey.

giraffe-small

Did you know?

So, why do we think giraffes are so brilliant? Well, if they were up for an award, they’d win tallest mammal hooves down – they’re around 6ft when they’re born and grow to be a whopping 20ft.

The saying goes that a leopard can’t change its spots, and a giraffe isn’t much different in this sense: no two have the same pattern – meaning their markings are a little like fingerprints: unique.

And if you ever stick your tongue out at a giraffe, you’ll find it’s not much of a competition – their tongues are 18 to 20 inches long and a striking blue-black colour (which incidentally is to stop them getting sun burn while they’re munching away).

So, what can you do to support these beautiful beasts in 2017?

Help a wild giraffe

We’re committed to supporting conservation and each year on World Giraffe Day (21st June) we raise money for the Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF). With less than 100,000 giraffes left in the wild, these tall and sturdy beasts need you more than ever before. Why not donate to GCF to help support giraffes living in the African savannah? You could even adopt a giraffe living in the wild, or perhaps you could hold your own event to help raise money for giraffes on World Giraffe Day?

giraffe-group

Adopt one of our giraffes

As well as supporting wild giraffes running free on the African grasslands, there are plenty of ways you can support giraffes that live a little closer to home. For just £35, you can adopt a giraffe that lives at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm by purchasing an Animal Gift Box Adoption through our online shop. These boxes contribute to the cost of keeping these rare animals, meaning that you’re doing your bit to help out this dwindling species. It’s also educational as you get a factsheet all about these wonderful creatures.

Although you don’t get to take one home with you as part of an adoption (they do need lots of space to run around, you know), you’ll get an adoption gift box complete with a cuddly toy. As well as a certificate, you’ll also get your name displayed by their enclosure – what better way to show that you’ve made a difference? You’ll even get a free day ticket so you can come and visit your adopted animal whenever you like!

Come and say “hello”

The simplest way of supporting giraffes is by visiting Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm to say “hello”. Tickets are available online and you can see our opening times here.

Set in 110 acres of land, our giraffes can trot and frolic as much as they please. It might be a little chilly still, but luckily our giraffe house is heated so that they’re still toasty even in winter.

elephant-hug

Learn about giraffes

Each day at 2pm we have a talk about giraffes in the Giraffe House where you can learn more about these graceful and rare creatures. From what they eat (in the wild they eat shoots and Acacia leaves), to how long they live (up to 25 years), you’ll find out all the things you wanted to know about these animals from our experienced keepers.

Meet a giraffe

We offer close encounters of the tall kind, in the form of Giraffe Encounter experiences. For an additional £20 per person, one animal lover can meet and even feed our giraffes when they visit the zoo.

Book your encounter at the ticket office on the day of your visit before 1.30pm. This experience is available Monday to Saturday at 2pm after the Giraffe Talk and it’s first-come, first-served. Stand-in giraffe-feeders must be six years old or above, and under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

Help support these wonderful creatures by visiting us at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm today!


Tortoise Hatchlings

 

We have welcomed some super cute new arrivals to the Noah’s Ark Zoo family over December and January. Five tiny leopard tortoises have hatched from incubation in our Reptile House, causing excitement among our animal team who love it when our animals breed successfully.


Did you know?
The leopard tortoise is areptilenative to Southern and Eastern Africa and can live from 50 to 100 years, so our hatchlings have a long life ahead of them! They are one of the world’s largest species growing up to 70cm in length, but right now our hatchlings are just a little bigger than a 50p coin.

TortoiseThese tortoises can lay 5 to 100 eggs in a clutch (this is the term used for eggs laid by amphibians and reptiles); our leopard tortoise parents laid 14 eggs between them, so we may be seeing more arrivals over the coming weeks!


Where are the hatchlings now?
As the hatchlings are so young and vulnerable, it is important that our reptile keepers are able to keep a close eye on them. Due to their size the hatchlings can become cold very quickly, so their enclosure must maintain a temperature of around 27°C. The hatchlings are currently in an off show enclosure to ensure this can be regulated easily by the reptile keepers. Once they have grown a little more, they will then be on show to the public, so stay tuned for news!

Tortoise Hatchlings
Come and visit the proud parents!
In the meantime, the five leopard tortoise parents are on show to the public and can be found in their mixed-exhibit next to the gibbons. In our creep (a group of tortoises) of leopard tortoises we have one male (Terry) and four females (Topsy, Turvy, Maggie-May and Gwen). Also in the same enclosure we have one African spur tortoise and eight ring tailed lemurs. Mixed exhibits such as this one provide enrichment for our animals through their interactions with one another. We are often lucky enough to capture this on camera, as you can see in this video!

 

New Attractions

 

If you’ve been up to Noah’s Ark this year you may have notice we’ve made some rather large changes around the zoo! We’ve started the 2017 season with new catering facilities and a shiny new slide for visitors to enjoy.


Food Barn
Say ‘hello’ to the smart new interior of our Food Barn, as well as a completely revamped menu and new opening hours! You can now grab yourself a cup of freshly ground coffee to warm up at the end of your visit (which may be well needed throughout winter!), or get a takeaway coffee to enjoy whilst wandering around the zoo.

Cafe


The new menu has something to suit everyone; from freshly made sandwiches to homemade pizza. We also have a fantastic kids menu to keep your little ones happy. Take a look at the selection available in our Menu.


You can now also enjoy breakfast at Noah’s Ark! If you’re visiting for one of our Keeper Experiences, why not drop into the Food Barn for breakfast after your early morning start? The Food Barn is now opening at 8am for those who need an early morning caffeine hit!


Rainbow Slide
There’s so much fun to be had at Noah’s Ark Zoo already, but if you need that extra rush of adrenaline we’ve got a treat for you! You may have loved our old Rainbow Slide, but you’ll now notice that it has been replaced with an upgrade which is bigger, faster and more exciting than ever!

Rainbow Slide


The new slide is 6.6 meters of multi-coloured fun that is sure to please young thrill-seekers. You can find the new slide in the same place as before, in our indoor play barn behind the Ark Arena. Grab yourself a sack and see if you’re brave enough to take a trip down the Rainbow Slide!

 

 

Christmas cheer at Noah’s Ark!

 

When you have a herd of reindeer wandering around, it feels a little like every day is Christmas Day. So how do we get into the Christmas spirit each year? Well, we pop on a Christmas hat and sing carols, of course. ‘Tis the season to be jolly, after all.

reindeer-small

What else have we been up to?

Our Reindeer Dash on 3rd December was a great success and the perfect way for us to start feeling festive. ‘What’s a Reindeer Dash’, you ask? Well, kids and grown-ups alike ran, walked and pranced along our one mile zoo track sporting the height of Christmas attire: antlers. Those that took part could even see how they’d look with real antlers in our designated selfie spot.

The first nine reindeer-dashers to cross the finish line nabbed themselves a medal, while the reindeer-in-training that trotted their way into first place won their very own reindeer adoption pack.

Stand-in reindeer even got to head to the fields and meet our own real herd of reindeer – Caspar, and the rest of the herd.

Although it’s a little chilly at this time of year, reindeer are built for the cold. With their outer layer of cosy fur and large feet for ambling through snow, they love nothing more than being outdoors.

Once all the reindeer were fed and watered, we all sat down for some crafting. Crafters made their own clay reindeer and willow stars to take home while members of the Nailsea Singing Project sang their hearts out in the courtyard, helping to bring an extra pinch of season’s greetings to the day.

medal-small

What’s coming up?

Join us for a family day of festive fun at our Rock Nativity on 17th December.

The Rock Project, a group of 7 to 18-year-old aspiring musicians, and Nailsea-based performance art group, The School, are joining forces for an off-the-beaten track take on the classic nativity. The show will feature some classic rock hits and is our first-ever rock concert here at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm.

There are three showings through the day: 12pm, 1.30pm and 3pm. Why not buy your tickets online so you don’t miss out?

And once you’re there, you get to meet the animals, too – from Santa’s favourite reindeer to nativity-themed animals, such as a donkeys and camels.

Looking for a last-minute Christmas present?

Haven’t finished your Christmas shopping yet? An Adoption Gift Box could be the perfect gift for your friends or family. As well as a pretty presentation box, you also get a factsheet, a soft toy and even a free zoo day ticket to go and visit your adopted animal. Along with a presentation certificate and your name displayed at the animal exhibit – what better gift could there be?

From a Bengal Tiger to a Nile Crocodile, there’s an animal for everyone – just make sure to order before 20th December if you want the box in time to wrap and put under the tree.


Tortoise Hatchlings

 

We have welcomed some super cute new arrivals to the Noah’s Ark Zoo family over December and January. Five tiny leopard tortoises have hatched from incubation in our Reptile House, causing excitement among our animal team who love it when our animals breed successfully.


Did you know?
The leopard tortoise is areptilenative to Southern and Eastern Africa and can live from 50 to 100 years, so our hatchlings have a long life ahead of them! They are one of the world’s largest species growing up to 70cm in length, but right now our hatchlings are just a little bigger than a 50p coin.

TortoiseThese tortoises can lay 5 to 100 eggs in a clutch (this is the term used for eggs laid by amphibians and reptiles); our leopard tortoise parents laid 14 eggs between them, so we may be seeing more arrivals over the coming weeks!


Where are the hatchlings now?
As the hatchlings are so young and vulnerable, it is important that our reptile keepers are able to keep a close eye on them. Due to their size the hatchlings can become cold very quickly, so their enclosure must maintain a temperature of around 27°C. The hatchlings are currently in an off show enclosure to ensure this can be regulated easily by the reptile keepers. Once they have grown a little more, they will then be on show to the public, so stay tuned for news!

Tortoise Hatchlings
Come and visit the proud parents!
In the meantime, the five leopard tortoise parents are on show to the public and can be found in their mixed-exhibit next to the gibbons. In our creep (a group of tortoises) of leopard tortoises we have one male (Terry) and four females (Topsy, Turvy, Maggie-May and Gwen). Also in the same enclosure we have one African spur tortoise and eight ring tailed lemurs. Mixed exhibits such as this one provide enrichment for our animals through their interactions with one another. We are often lucky enough to capture this on camera, as you can see in this video!

 

New Attractions

 

If you’ve been up to Noah’s Ark this year you may have notice we’ve made some rather large changes around the zoo! We’ve started the 2017 season with new catering facilities and a shiny new slide for visitors to enjoy.


Food Barn
Say ‘hello’ to the smart new interior of our Food Barn, as well as a completely revamped menu and new opening hours! You can now grab yourself a cup of freshly ground coffee to warm up at the end of your visit (which may be well needed throughout winter!), or get a takeaway coffee to enjoy whilst wandering around the zoo.

Cafe


The new menu has something to suit everyone; from freshly made sandwiches to homemade pizza. We also have a fantastic kids menu to keep your little ones happy. Take a look at the selection available in our Menu.


You can now also enjoy breakfast at Noah’s Ark! If you’re visiting for one of our Keeper Experiences, why not drop into the Food Barn for breakfast after your early morning start? The Food Barn is now opening at 8am for those who need an early morning caffeine hit!


Rainbow Slide
There’s so much fun to be had at Noah’s Ark Zoo already, but if you need that extra rush of adrenaline we’ve got a treat for you! You may have loved our old Rainbow Slide, but you’ll now notice that it has been replaced with an upgrade which is bigger, faster and more exciting than ever!

Rainbow Slide


The new slide is 6.6 meters of multi-coloured fun that is sure to please young thrill-seekers. You can find the new slide in the same place as before, in our indoor play barn behind the Ark Arena. Grab yourself a sack and see if you’re brave enough to take a trip down the Rainbow Slide!

 

 

Jumbo partnership with power company benefits elephants

 

Weston Power and Avon Wildlife Trust help supply trees for elephant food

Our elephants are benefiting from a new partnership with a regional power company and a local wildlife trust, getting daily access to freshly cut trees to eat.

eatingbrowseweb

Always on the look to help develop the benefits of zoos and wildlife parks, we’ve promoted the change in zoo elephant diets with other industry leaders from high calorie treat foods, to their natural diet of branches and grass. This new partnership will help our eles M’Changa and Janu continue enjoying a steady supply of just that.

With the help of Weston Power and Avon Wildlife Trust who are both undertaking tree cutting work not far from the 20 acre elephant habitat, our Keepers spotted an opportunity to sustainably recycle the new waste wood.

Collected by our hard-working Grounds team who regularly coppice local woodland to supplement the diets of grazing animals at the zoo, trailer loads of tree branches are now collected several times a week from the new area in neighbouring fields and driven back by tractor to our 100 acre estate ready for elephants, giraffes and tapirs.

collectingbrowseweb

The government’s Henley Report criticised the zoo elephant world in 2010 for the comparatively short life in captivity of elephants, with too many suffering from arthritis and being over-weight. Noah’s Ark’s Elephant Eden was built in response and has achieved international recognition since for its welfare-improving training, healthcare and nutrition routines.

Noah’s Ark has been recognised with industry awards for its sustainable practise and green tourism for visitors, including the national Gold from the Green Tourism Business Scheme and Silver from the 2016 Bristol, Bath and Somerset Tourism awards.

Our visitors are able to enjoy the interesting sight of Janu and M’Changa stripping bark from the fresh branches piled in their field, natural behaviours not commonly seen in zoos and an important educational experience. If you haven’t been to Noah’s Ark before, plan your visit this weekend for Half Term and see what you’re missing.

“These are fascinating natural behaviours, which very few people in the world get to watch” said zoo owner Anthony Bush. “It also means that the elephants are never bored, never show stereotypical behaviour”.

eatingbrowse2web

We currently have 2 elephants and are in negotiation for receiving others soon – stay tuned for more details over the coming months.

We’re open Monday to Saturday from 10:30am – 5pm. For more information visit www.noahsarkzoofarm.co.uk