December's animal news

Potoroo

A trio of Long-Nosed potoroo arrived from Blackpool Zoo on 25 July 2019… Keep your eyes peeled as our potoroos will be making an appearance soon with our sun conures!

Potoroos are small, omnivorous, terrestrial marsupials native to the south western coasts of Australia and Tasmania. They live in a variety of habitats including rainforest, coastal scrub, heathland and woodlands and tend to be found in areas with thick ground or understorey vegetation, which they use for shelter.

Long-nosed Potoroo are listed on the IUCN Red List as Near Threatened, with numbers still decreasing. The main threat facing the species is predation by red foxes, as well as by wild dogs and feral cats. They are also affected by habitat loss and fragmentation, though they are found in several conservation reserves where they have some.

Long-nosed potoroos dig themselves a shallow ‘squat’ under thick vegetation to rest in during the day. All three are confident little characters so be sure to look out for them pottering around and exploring their new surroundings.

Sclater’s crowned pigeon

We’re pleased to say that Neil, our Sclater’s crowned pigeon, has returned to Tropical House and has brought back a friend to join him! Maria, a female Sclater’s crowned pigeon, has joined Marwell all the way from Copenhagen Zoo thanks to a breeding recommendation by the European Ex-situ breeding Programme. This species is listed as ‘near threatened’ on the IUCN Red List, with numbers decreasing.

Unlike many other species of birds, female Sclater’s crowned pigeons are just as vibrant as the males.

Maria is settling in well and you can see the pair in Tropical House alongside other birds such as Nicobar pigeons, purple honeycreepers and Java sparrows as well as two white-naped pheasant pigeons, who arrived at the zoo in 2019, too.

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