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Animals at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Step on the Scales

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: August 25, 2021 1:35 pm

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Annual Weigh In

Scarlet Macaw Trio Haribo 980g, Skittles 975g and Sherbet 880g step on the scales with keeper Liz Brown.

Photo Credit: ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

It's a big week for the keepers and animals at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo as they encourage all their animals to jump on the scales to protect their health. Animals from the tiniest butterflies to the largest elephants and everything in between will be weighed by their keepers.

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo have shared images of some of the 9,500 animals which call the United Kingdom attraction home as they undergo their health checks. The weigh-ins are part of efforts to keep the collection at UK's largest zoo happy and healthy.

Zoological manager Matthew Webb said: “All of our animals at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo are weighed and measured regularly, but the annual weigh-in is an opportunity to review the information we’ve recorded, and ensure it is up-to-date and accurate. 

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Annual Weigh In

Slender tailed meerkats  Bippity and Pixie both weighed in at 1kg

Photo Credit: ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

While some animals such as scarlet macaw trio, Haribo, Skittles and Sherbet, swooped straight onto a special weighing perch others such as Heidi the reindeer needed some gentle encouragement such as the promise of food.


Each animal's weights and measurements will be recorded in the Zoological Information Management System (ZIMS) database. This allows keepers around the globe to compare their notes on thousands of animals to help inform better care decisions.

“With so many animals with different personalities, the zookeepers have to come up with creative tactics to entice them onto the scales, from luring Northern rockhopper penguins onto scales in exchange for their favourite fishy snacks, to encouraging our ring-tailed lemurs to bounce onto the scales for a tasty reward," added Webb.

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ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Annual Weigh In

Keeper Thomas Maunders weighs a chameleon which came in at 209g

Photo Credit:ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

Not only do the checks help with care though. It can help keepers discover some very exciting information with weight gain in some of the animals indicating they are expecting.

With many of the species at the zoo being part of international breeding projects to save endangered species it makes this work even more important.

Learn more about Ring-Tailed Lemurs here – Ring Tailed Lemur Fact File | The Animal Facts

Learn more about Scarlet Macaws here – Scarlet Macaw Fact File | The Animal Facts

Learn more about ZSL Whipsnade Zoo on their website – ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Annual Weigh In

The ring-tailed lemurs came in at an average weight of 2.3kg each

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Annual Weigh In

Reinder Heidi weighed in at 71.5kg with the help of keepers  Christina Finch and Danielle Hearne

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Annual Weigh In

A northern rockhopper penguin steps on the scales with some encouragement from a keeper. They weighed in at 3.8kg.

Photo Credit: ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

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