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Zookeepers read to animals for World Book Day

World Book Neigh! Zookeepers Read Popular Stories to Animals

Once upon a time at a zoo in East Sussex, the sound of gentle voices whispering tales of adventure could be heard from all around, as the animals were treated to some special bedtime stories. Check out the adorable video on our TikTok here!

The theme for World Book Day this year is ‘make it YOUR World Book Day’, with book lovers around the globe being encouraged to celebrate the day however they wish - and the furry, feathered, soft, and scaly residents of Drusillas Zoo Park didn’t want to miss out.

Keepers dug out their favourite children’s stories to read aloud to many of Drusillas’ animals; the red pandas and sloths read ‘Who’s at the Zoo?’, Shetland ponies enjoyed ‘Monkey Puzzle’, armadillos got their noses into ‘The Gruffalo’, and the capybaras learnt about ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’.

Zoo Section Leader, Claudia Farley, commented: “We have built up really special relationships with our animals, and we are always looking for new enrichment activities for them, like offering food in the form of a puzzle or introducing new items for them to explore – so it was fun to see how our animals responded to us spending some extra time near them and reading aloud. It was lovely to see their curious little minds trying to work out what we were doing, and they seemed to be really engaged and enjoy the stories!”

Drusillas’ Head of Education, James Woodward, said: “Reading is a great way to stimulate a child’s imagination! There are so many wonderful books out there, and hundreds of books about animals. They are a really useful learning tool because they teach children about the animals of the world in an exciting and engaging way. Not all learning has to be sitting in a classroom, some of the best learning come from getting lost in the magic of a good book.”

Drusillas Park offers a wide range of educational activities throughout the year, with tailored sessions available from nursery groups right up to higher education, with plenty of interactive animal experiences and hands-on, creative teaching methods.

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