Spooky encounters & treats for our Chimps

October 27, 2010 § Leave a comment

Shriek week at the zoo, trick or treat with our cheeky Chimps and out & about with our outreach team.

This week at Edinburgh zoo we have been very busy celebrating the coming Halloween with some spooky activities for all our visitors! But we are not the only ones that have been celebrating!

One of our visitors meeting Kevin the Madagascan hissing cockroach

In the Education centre we had our rainforest room decorated into the creepy cave were our resident witch and all her friends were casting spells and introducing us to some of her slimy and crawly friends at our encounters table as well as card making on our arts & crafts table.

Our resident witch for the afternoon, zoo volunteer Therese stewart.

For our bravest visitors we had the creepy challenge; putting a hand into the bucket of mealworms (a larva form of beetle) without looking and puling out a pumpkin token to win a prize.
Around the Zoo the Safari bus was decorated as a haunted bus tour, as well as a zoo trail to find all the hidden eyeballs to win a prize Yuk!

In the Budongo trail we had some free face painting with Val from Avia tricks, as well as cake & biscuit decorating from Iona cakes. The Glasgow science centre set up their fantastic Bodyworks interactive workshops in the lecture theatre, teaching us all about the human body.

It wasn’t just the visitors that were having fun, our chimps got to join in the celebrations by having some pumpkins stuffed with lots of yummy treats such as oats & jam as well as having a go at bobbing for apples. These activities are known environmental enrichment and encourage the chimps to spend more time looking for their food, investigating the novel items, and communicating with each other while they investigate their treats.


Edith the Chimp bobbing for apples

 Chimpanzees are very intelligent animals, and it is important to keep them occupied. Our keepers over at Budongo trail are always coming up with new and exciting ways to keep our chimps busy.

One of our Keepers at Budongo Trail carving the pumpkins

A Wild day out

Our outreach team have been very busy this week at the AECC in Aberdeen. 

The CBBC show Live ‘n’ Deadly was in full swing with Steve Backshall carrying out demonstrations on the main stage, with several thousand extremely excited children. 

Education Officer Amy Cox at the RZSS stand

Education officers Amy Cox, Dee Masters and James Silvey were invited to attend the event, hosting the RZSS stand in the partner tent. “We arrived with live animals including Corn snakes, giant African land snails, Madagascan hissing cockroaches and Rats for the children and adults to handle, while also displaying many exotic animal artefacts for the children to manipulate and discover”.  “The interaction and enthusiasm from all there was immense and we had the most enjoyable day teaching others about what we do here at the zoo and about our animals”. 

The Edinburgh zoo stand appeared to go down a treat with all who passed by and the rats were clearly the favourite amongst the children due to their cute appearance and gentle nature.

Along beside us also hosting stands were BTCV, Bug life, Scottish Wildlife Trust and McDuff’s aquarium.  These stands had various animals, games and activities allowing the children to interact while learning, stimulating them and engaging them in the wildlife that surrounds us here in Scotland.

The Education team with Steve Backshall from CBBC Live 'n' Deadly

Overall the day was a huge success and we had a great time.  Our highlight had to be the photo with Steve that was taken at the end of the day.  A final reward for a hard day’s work!


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