The survey: Christmas in the Zoo

Director´s view

Miroslav Bobek  |  22. 12. 2014

Some time ago I was asked to relay the answers to the inquiry "How will you spend Christmas this year?", where the respondents to this question should be our animals. Fine, let´s proceed. We have prepared a wider survey, for which the curators of Prague Zoo have served as our qualified researchers.

North American River Otter Sanny(c) Prague Zoo North American River Otter Sanny(c) Prague Zoo

The results were remarkable. The main one can be summarized very succinctly: less food and more sex. To this I would add, that the animals are asking for less food and more sex in comparison with the general human population; our animals will always have enough food. Moreover, many of them will receive something to enrich their diet or they can look forward to their most favourite food (in this context, I would like to point out that we discovered a single animal, the North American River Otter named Sanny, who was impressed by the heavily subsidized Czech Fish campaign - Česká ryba campaign-,see below). We also succeeded in discovering a very extravagant way of how to spend Christmas, namely in a wine bar, or rather, in the wine fridge, powered by electricity. This information, as well as other results of the afore mentioned survey, will surely be published also in scientific journals.

Beautiful Christmas to animals and people!

  • Gorilla young Kiburi and Nuru: "We´ve heard a rumour that we will get a new hammock and a large feeding ball for Christmas, so we have high expectations!"
  • Lowland Gorilla, Richard, the male: "Hmm... I am looking forward to the surprise the keepers are preparing for us. As I do every year, I plan to stuff myself and then will lie down on my favourite plank bed to rest and digest my banquet." 
  • Penguins: "Christmas is the time we love best. The courtship period starts, which is always a very enjoyable time, so we are looking forward to it very much!"
  • Secret Toadhead Agama, called Tamerlán: "I know exactly what I´ll do on Christmas Day. Relax in the wine bar and enjoy the 15°C climate. I like to use the winter dormancy to regenerate and mature my gametes. I have to make sure that my family line will continue in the springtime!"
  • Steller's Sea-eagles: "The best time is after Christmas, when we will built cool nests using the leftover pine trees!"
  • Woodchuck: "It´s clear to me. I will lie down to hibernate in my burrow and have a good rest after the busy year. Please do not disturb!"
  • White-belted Black-and-white Ruffed Lemur called Mandrak: "They have brought me a new and very attractive female, Fania. She´ll be ready to mate before Christmas, so I am looking forward to it twice!"
  • Galápagos Giant Tortoise Eberhard: "I will spend Christmas as on any other winter day. I´ll bask under the radiant panels and enjoy the pleasant 40°C heat, eat some tasty hay and hydroponically grown barley, then lie down in the pool for a spell and snooze." 
  • Giant Anteater Hannibal: "I like Christmas and have high hopes. My biggest wish is that Ella, the female, would accept me and so I could spend the holidays in her house. It´s so dull to be alone."
  • Bisons: "For us Christmas means Christmas trees. We enjoy them a lot and like to toss them about, which is amusing also for our visitors."
  • Meerkats: "This Christmas surely will be fantastic. We can hardly wait, it is the first time we will spend Christmas with our young. The keepers will give us some juicy cricket as a treat for sure." 
  • North American River Otter Sanny: "With me it is clear - a juicy fish will be on the menu on Christmas Eve! I like trout and Czech carp most of all."

The survey: Christmas in the Zoo