Parrots and mini monkeys lined up to join snow leopards at Northumberland Country Zoo

Parrots could be the latest exotic addition to the collection at the Northumberland Country Zoo.

Wednesday, 3rd February 2021, 4:00 pm

A planning application seeking permission for the construction of a walk-through tropical house for South American species of birds and mammals has been lodged.

Maxine Bradley, curator at the family-run business at Eshott Heugh Farm, near Felton, said: “The species we will be focusing on showcasing will be South American parrot species including various macaws and smaller parrot species as well as tropical birds.

"We are also planning on adding some South American mammals, such as sloths, mini monkeys and armadillo.

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Macaws could be coming to the Northumberland Country Zoo. Picture: Pixabay

“This exhibit will be a huge draw as we currently do not have any exhibits highlighting parrot species in this way and visitors really love interacting with animals.”

The tropical house would have a waterfall feature as well as a visitor footpath and a little footbridge over a running stream, creating an immersive experience.

It would have roof lights to allow natural light in and the cladding on the sides of the building would be dark green.

This area is currently occupied by several old bird of prey aviaries which are currently being removed.

The proposed tropical house at the Northumberland Country Zoo.

If approved, it would lead to the creation of one full-time and two part-time jobs.

The zoo had been predicting around 120,000 visitors this year.

In December it welcomed two female snow leopard cubs from the Highland Wildlife Park. It is the only place in the North East to boast snow leopards as part of its collection.

"The snow leopards are doing really well,” said Maxine. “So far their favourite past-time is raccoon watching!”

The zoo is currently closed due to Covid-19 restrictions.

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