Love is in the air at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo as red pandas Ginger and Bruce celebrate their first anniversary on Valentine’s Day.
Since being introduced on the 14 of February last year the pair have got on well and have been enjoying each other’s company. Keepers gifted the pair a large red heart filled with their favourite bamboo to mark the occasion.
Red pandas are listed as endangered on the IUCN Red List so it is hoped that the pair will go on to have kits in the future which will help to safeguard the species against extinction.
A busy month for the Zoo
It’s been a busy month for Edinburgh Zoo, as they also welcomed a newborn Pancake Tortoise, Pamba. Pamba is the first Pancake Tortoise born at the Zoo.
“We are very happy to be announcing the hatching of the first ever pancake tortoise to be born at the Zoo. Pancake Day is a great opportunity for us to highlight the threats that the species face in the wild.” Gareth Bennett, Senior Presentation Keeper at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo, told us.
“The wild population is under threat due to young pancake tortoises being captured to be sold as pets. Pamba’s parents are an example of this as they joined us from Edinburgh Airport, where they had been seized by customs after being illegally imported. We welcomed them into our care and are very pleased to say they have thrived here.
“Pamba’s birth is very important as it adds important genetic diversity to the European Endangered Species Breeding Programme, which is helping to safeguard the species from the decline in the wild.”
Pancake tortoises are also under threat by continued destruction of their natural habitat of Kenya and Tanzania for agricultural developments and overgrazing of domestic cattle and goats.
Pamba won’t be on show until the young tortoise is a little older but visitors to the Zoo can see Pamba’s parents in the Wee Beasties exhibit.
If you visit Scotland’s capital, make sure you include the Zoo on your list of must-visit places. Visit the Edinburgh Zoo website for more information on ticket prices.