Panda meets a snowman and a happy hippo birthday

January 23, 2013 § 1 Comment


As snow fell all across the country this weekend, snowmen started to pop up everywhere. Even the keeper’s at Edinburgh Zoo joined in with the frosty Tian Tians Snowmanfun, by creating a snowman for female panda Tian Tian.

Many people don’t realise that giant pandas love snow. They really enjoy playing with the cold, white stuff whenever it appears in their natural habitat of the Chinese mountains and forests. However, keeper’s think that this was probably Tian Tian’s first encounter with an actual snowman. With carrots for eyes, a nose and buttons and a hat made of panda cake, Tian Tian was quick to inspect the new addition to her enclosure and munch her way through the edible finishing touches.

She also took great delight in demolishing the snowman in a playful burst, rolling the large snowballs of its body and head down the hill of her enclosure!

Holly Duncan and Derek Elsby, both members of the visitor services Panda Team at Edinburgh Zoo, managed to capture the moment in picture (Holly) and film (Derek). Click here to check out the footage on You Tube.

Meanwhile we said hippo, hippo hooray as Edinburgh Zoo’s pygmy hippo Ellen turned eight!

PygmyhippoFamily_KP_Jan2013Birthday girl Ellen may be much smaller when compared to her significantly larger relatives the common hippos, although this eight year old certainly has a big character. To mark turning another year older, keepers have pulled out all the stops and let Ellen eat cake. Not just any birthday cake though, Ellen was treated to a cake that would entice any herbivore: complete with hay and a few tasty pieces of fruit and vegetables.

Ellen, male mate Otto and their newest daughter Eve, who recently turned one, were also on hand to help her munch her way through some birthday cake.

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§ One Response to Panda meets a snowman and a happy hippo birthday

  • It’s wonderful that you guys really do go the extra mile for the animals. I’ll keep bringing people over to visit until I’m a limping vegetable! Love your work – can’t wait for the new penguin home!

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