Tag Archives: Days Out for Children

Critically Endangered Monkey Born at Drusillas Park

7 Nov

The baby boom continues as a critically endangered monkey is  born at Drusillas as part of the European breeding programme. The Sulawesi black crested macaque was delivered on Tuesday 25th October and staff are delighted with the new arrival.

Black crested macaques are native to the Indonesian island of Sulawesi where they are now regarded as critically endangered by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature). In the last 40 years it is estimated that the population has been reduced by more than 80% due to habitat loss and hunting pressure and they now face the very real threat of extinction in the wild.

These large impressive monkeys have just one baby at a time, born with a pink face which darkens with age. So far the baby bundle, thought to be male, is thriving alongside parents Kendari and Moteck. He will remain very dependent for the next four to five months, clinging to his mother who will nurse him for at least a year.

Kendari and Moteck were introduced at Drusillas in 2010, after being re-homed respectively from Chester Zoo and Monkey Park in Israel. The new arrival is the couple’s first baby together and hopefully will be one of many more to come.

Breeding programmes such as the one at Drusillas Park operate throughout the zoo community, in conjunction with the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria. By cooperating in this way, animal collections hope to safeguard the existence of many animal species in order to secure their future survival.

Zoo Manager, Sue Woodgate commented: “It is wonderful to see the new addition to our macaque family. He is showing a lot of interest in his surroundings and being doted on by his cousin Kamala who was born at Drusillas in 2010. We are expecting a lot of monkeying around from these two over the coming months.”


Baby Monkey Boom at Drusillas Park

1 Nov

Drusillas is currently in the midst of a baby boom with a multitude of mini monkeys popping up around the Park. Amongst the latest arrivals are two emperor tamarins, two cotton-topped tamarins, three red-handed tamarins and two silvery marmosets.

The monkey madness started when Emperor tamarin, Lucy gave birth to twins.  This species takes its name from the 19th Century Emperor, Wilhelm II of Germany, who they are said to resemble on account of their distinctive moustaches. The fan-tash-stic pair are becoming more independent everyday and can now be seen playing with their older siblings.

Two silvery marmosets were next to make an appearance. The pearl coloured pair were born on 28th August and are thriving under the watchful guidance of proud parents Captain Jack and Hester. Silvery marmosets are native to the forests of Central andSouth Americaand usually give birth to twins every five to six months.

Then it was the turn of the red-handed tamarins, who delivered triplets.Keepers made the happy discovery on 28th September and all the babies are doing well and prospering. This species usually have two babies at a time which are generally carried around by the father; to have three is rare.

Finally two critically endangered cotton-topped tamarins arrived. The tiny bundles were born on 14th October and are doing well with the help of Dad, John and Mum, Georgie. Cotton topped tamarins are native to the humid tropical forests of Columbia, where there has been a severe reduction in the population mainly due to the destruction of their habitat. Like many of the animals at Drusillas, the group is part of a European breeding programme.

Zoo Manager, Sue Woodgate commented: “We are always excited by new arrivals. It is brilliant to have so many babies born within our breeding programmes and they are proving very popular with the public too. Fingers crossed, we are hoping for a few more happy events in the near future.

Snake Saturday and Spider Sunday

21 Jun

Venture down to Drusillas Park this weekend (25th and 26th June) and meet some of the extraordinary animals taking up residence in the Discovery Centre as part of Snake Saturday and Spider Sunday.

On Saturday 25th June, a range of snakes will be sliding their way to the zoo and experts will be available to give advice on these fangtastic creatures. If you find snakes charming or think your knowledge of boas is constricted, this is the ideal opportunity to find out more about them.

Or creep down to Drusillas on Sunday 26th June and discover some spectacular spiders. Experts from the British Tarantula Society will be available to answer questions throughout the day, including Drusillas Park’s very own spider woman, Angela Hale.

Known as Tarangela at the zoo, Angela knows all there is to know about these eight-legged creatures and will be on hand to help visitors understand these mini monsters.

Drusillas Staff Have A Night to Remember

3 Jun

A team of staff from Drusillas Park, had A Night to Remember when they took to the streets of Eastbourne to raise money for Chestnut Tree House, the only children’s hospice in Sussex.

The fourteen ladies were amongst over 600 participants that followed a 10 mile route under the stars, starting from Eastbourne’s Sovereign Centre at midnight.  

The Drusillas Park team raised in excess of £2,800 with a further £110 in donations taken by the zoo’s face painters, who volunteered their services at the event. This contributed to the total of over £75,000 pledged by the participants on the night, beating the £57,000 raised by the first midnight walk in 2010.

Chestnut Tree House offers a home-from-home environment for the children and their families and costs over the £2.5 million per year to run. Families are never charged for their care and the hospice receives little government funding, so it relies almost entirely on the help and support of the people of Sussex.


Dressed as various animals and donning the exclusive Night to Remember purple t-shirt, the zoo team took their position at the start line after a rousing speech by Mayor of Eastbourne, Carolyn Heaps. On their return, each of the walkers received a medal and a well-earned breakfast.

Claire Peters, Head of Public Relations at Drusillas Park commented: “Chestnut Tree House is our Charity of the Year and we are delighted to have been able to support the event and raise so much money. All our walkers had a fantastic time – it really was A Night to Remember!”

Jo Carden, Events and Fundraising Officer for Chestnut Tree House added:  ‘We had high hopes that this year’s event would be even bigger and better but we had no idea that our ladies would do such a fantastic job and not only beat what we raised last year, but completely smash the total!”

“The money we raised on the night will allow us to provide 38 families with a three night stay at the house, allowing them to have a break and recharge their batteries.”

Things to Do During May Half Term

20 May

As the kids break up this May half term get ready to soak up the fun at award winning Drusillas Park; the South East’s Visitor Attraction of the Year.

There is plenty to entertain the youngest to the oldest visitor including the zoo’s brand new attraction for 2011, Lory Landing due to open on 28th May.

This walk-through aviary offers visitors the opportunity to get up close and personal with a friendly flock of rainbows lorikeets; a brightly coloured parrot native to Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and Australia.

Cbeebies Superstar, Justin Fletcher will also tumble into Drusillas on Sunday 29th May followed by Shaun the Sheep and Timmy on Bank Holiday Monday 30th May; ewe’d be crazy to miss it!

Plus there’s all the usual animal magic on offer with hundreds of exotic creatures in the zoo, oodles of adventure play and a Thomas & Friends™ train ride that runs daily.  

Easter Events: Ben 10’s Four Arms Smashes into Drusillas Park!

6 Apr

Don’t forget that Ben 10 will be smashing into Drusillas Park next week on Wednesday 13th April transformed as the formidable Four Arms.

Four Arms from Ben 10

Within the first series of the Ben 10 saga, Four Arms is the animated hero’s most commonly used and favoured ally.

In the TV show, the four-armed and four-eyed alien proves an unrivalled powerhouse of physical strength and force. He is able to create shockwaves by simply clapping his hands together or pounding the ground, earning him the nickname Big Smack.

The Cartoon Network character will make an appearance at the zoo, giving visitors the opportunity to meet Ben 10’s hugely popular alter ego. The super powered alien will be appearing at intervals throughout the day, making a visit to Drusillas truly out of this world.