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ZSL London Zoo A little wishful thinking

Discussion in 'United Kingdom' started by BillEel, 11 Jul 2018.

  1. BillEel

    BillEel Active Member

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    I know there’s been a few of these before but not for some years now it seems, and since London Zoo has been pretty quiet news-wise lately and since it’s a subject I’ve devoted quite a few idle thoughts to I thought I’d come out and ask:

    What developments would you like to see in the zoos future? How would you like the see the challenges posed by the Mappins and Casson resolved? To your mind could the Burton giraffe house be used for anything other then giraffes?

    Personally I’d like to see a decent set of dens built adjoining the Mappins to allow for a larger, more successful bear exhibit, preferably for Andean bears. Perhaps with some renovation a new aviary mirroring the Snowdon could be constructed around the mountain peaks to hold condors? Failing that I’ve seen some excellent “concept art” from an architectural firm that proposed an Amur leopard enclosure there.
     
  2. Brum

    Brum Well-Known Member

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    First and foremost the North Bank needs sorting. and not just The Snowden Aviary, the old pheasantry and crane/geese paddocks are ripe for development. Once the colobus walk-through is in use then it's going to get more foot fall and more people are going to see the shoddiness of that area.

    The other major problems (Casson and Mappins) both have animals in so they can wait, but the potential for decent exhibits is there, just the imagination seems to be lacking.
     
  3. FBBird

    FBBird Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure of I've gone on about this before, but new geese and crane paddocks and new Pheasantry would be lovely, and redress the current almost complete absence of these groups from the zoo.
     
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  4. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    Wishful thinking I fear...more likely some new sort of walk-through enclosure- zoos seem more and more interested in these sorts of interactive displays. I'd like to see the return of species such as pheasants and waterfowl too but I'm not their target audience.:(
     
  5. BillEel

    BillEel Active Member

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    Wishful thinking is the name of the game, though I suppose you could have the best of both worlds, another walkthrough aviary to join the other four! To be honest I’m not sure what other walkthrough exhibits the zoo could do - there are only so many species you can build a walkthrough exhibit for and by now they’ve got most of them covered. I’ve heard stirrings that that may be the eventual fate of the old anteater and vicuña paddocks which is a great shame.

    For my money I’d like to see the slope of the canal banks used to an exhibits advantage, something arboreal perhaps so that they’ll be eye-level to the path in the tree tops? Going back through the archives here I saw someone had posted a design project outlining a hypothetical koala house on the north bank, perhaps with some canal-side pools for magpie geese and other Australasian waterfowl that would be something to see.
     
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  6. Daubentoniidae

    Daubentoniidae Member

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    Do you think there is any room for developing a Lorikeet feeding walkthrough like other zoos e.g. Bristol or are the aviaries too small?

    The tree top exhibit sounds interesting although koalas wouldn't do a lot so it wouldn't be the most exciting experience. But they could get the tree kangaroo out of hiding (if they still have it) and incorporate it into a new exhibit. Otherwise they could just remain aviaries, a good collection of owls would be nice.
     
  7. BillEel

    BillEel Active Member

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    This would be my pitch. I’d take the spot in that screenshot there. Potentially you could structure it so you have the lorikeet walkthrough extending off the path there connecting to a raised platform over-hanging the bank. This platform - netted or glass-fronted to prevent the birds escaping would then be the viewing area for tree-top koalas. I believe the tree-kangaroo is quite elderly and unlikely to go on show in her lifetime. With the koalas in the tree-tops the ground could be given over to a nice assortment of Australian waterfowl - I’d certainly like some magpie geese and perhaps spotted whistling duck, or some shelducks or possibly something like swamp wallaby.

    That said, I feel like London Zoo needs a lorikeet walkthrough about as much as it needs another meerkat enclosure, and whilst put in the context of a larger Australian experience I’d prefer to create more of a sedate atmosphere in the upper reaches. Rather then a aviary then I’d go for a more conventional hall with some smaller Australian species - perhaps the frogmouth could fit in this hypothetical area, or we could work in a quoll enclosure or even a new tree-kangaroo exhibit.
     

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  8. FBBird

    FBBird Well-Known Member

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    Spotted Whistling Duck have only a toehold in Oz -- Plumed and Wandering are more 'Australian'. Other waterfowl that fit, apart from Magpie Geese and Australian Shelduck, are Chestnut Teal, Pink-eared and Freckled Ducks. Note sure if Australian White-eye are available, but they would of course fit too.