Here’s one youngster who just loves to be active. South American fur seal Gemini, who will be three years old in June, was delighted with her latest toy, a length of artificial seaweed.
The reproduction kelp came from Danish Company Pangea Rocks, who specialize in recreating habitats and supplying replica plants for zoos and aquariums. Living Coasts’ spokesperson Phil Knowling explained: “This was the first time the keepers had put the kelp in the pool – we bought it for her as environmental enrichment. It went down very well!”
Environmental enrichment is all about stimulating animals physically and mentally. While it’s a science, there’s a very creative side to it, with keepers often making animal toys out of recycled materials. But on this occasion Gemini’s devoted keepers splashed out on a treat for her.
Gemini, born on 3rd June 2014, was hand-reared because her mother was unable to produce milk and had to be taught how to swim by zoo keeper Libor Mach. For more information go to www.livingcoasts.org.uk or ring 01803 202470.