The Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust was recognised at the awards ceremony held by BIAZA, the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums, at Twycross Zoo, Warwickshire.
An unnamed cherry-crowned mangabey male was born on October 21 to mother Kibibi and father Yengo at Paignton Zoo, which brings the soo’s troop up to six – two males and four females.
Head keeper Andrew Fry said: “It’s a family group – mom, dad, sister, granny, aunty and baby. This is the second time they have bred with us – his older sister was born here last summer.”
Named for the patch of red hair on their heads, cherry-crowned mangabeys (Cercocebus torquatus) are African forest monkeys. Their range includes the Omo Forest in Nigeria where Paignton Zoo funds environmental education work.
The species is classified as Vulnerable by the IUCN Red List, mainly due to habitat destruction and the bush meat trade. The zoo’s troop can be found in the Monkey Heights complex.
Paignton Zoo Environmental Park has won an award – for its toilets.
The zoo – a registered charity – has been awarded the top grade of five stars in the national Loo of the Year Awards.
Kevin Frediani, curator of plants and gardens, who oversees the cleaning team, said: “People might expect Paignton Zoo to be thinking more about endangered species than clean toilets, but as a top attraction we have to look after the basic needs of our visitors. Poor toilet facilities can take the shine off a great day out. We are only the second zoo ever to gain such an accolade!”
Paignton Zoo has been nominated for a national award in the Parks & Gardens category. Winners are announced at the Loo of the Year Awards Presentation Event on December 2. Shopping centres, restaurants, schools and public buildings were among last year’s five star winners.
The Paignton Zoo cleaning team – supervisor Andrew Hart and cleaners John Lount, Susan Ball and Andrew Timpson – look after the zoo’s 10 public toilets as well as various offices scattered through the 80 acre grounds. Kevin: “It’s good to get formal recognition for this crucial but often overlooked service – especially as this was the first time we had entered.”
Since their introduction in 1987, the annual Loo of the Year Awards have helped focus the spotlight on ‘away from home’ toilets throughout the UK. The awards aim to encourage the highest standards in all types of public toilets.
Toilets are judged on signage and communication, décor and maintenance, fixtures, cleanliness, equipment, air quality, changing facilities and customer care. All entries receive a grading, ranging from one to five stars, following an unannounced visit by a Loo of the Year Awards inspector.
Two male red necked ostriches have moved from Hannover Zoo in Germany to Paignton Zoo, South Devon. The journey of over 600 miles (nearly a thousand kilometres) took around 30 hours by road, including rest stops.
Paignton Zoo Environmental Park – a registered conservation, science and education charity – wants people to bring in their old fur coats, crocodile skin shoes and other items so that they can be used in teaching sessions.