Our mammal house is insulated and heated all year round at 20 degrees. The raccoons, meerkats, skunks and armadillo have constant outdoor access between their indoor and outdoor enclosures. We provide enrichment and naturalistic enclosures which we change around regularly to allow the animals to exhibit natural behaviours and keep them entertained. They are health checked weekly and are given a specialised diet tailored to the species. As part of our family all animals are given human playtime and the raccoons have clicker training to encourage them to exhibit natural behaviours as part of their enrichment.
We have spent a vast amount of time with the animals and they have been going out from a young age and do enjoy it as a form of enrcihment with new sights, sounds and smells. If an animal is having a grumpy day just like us and doesnt want to go out then it doesnt go out. All the animals are rotated and for most of the animals we have more than one of each species. we also do not allow handling of any of our mammals they will either go on your lap, be stroked, fed or watched depending on the event and number of people. Imagine passing around a meerkat to 15 children, imagine that was your cat or dog! They are used to meeting people but children find it very difficult to handle animals in general so to avoid any risk to you or the animals well being we do not allow children to handle mammals under any circumstances.
All our mammals have been bred in captivity. We do not breed animals for sale, train them to do tricks like a circus, and do not recommend keeping any exotic animals as pets. We have a vast amount of experience in exotic animals and they are not house pets, they are a full time commitment, they are very expensive when it comes to vets fees, heating and diet, and have very challenging behaviours.
Our aim is to educate and encourage children and adults alike to respect animals because i think we forget sometimes that we are one ourselves. They are not toys, they have feelings and no matter what they look like or how they behave they should all be treated with the same respect. In doing so we hope to reduce animal cruelty and regularly consult parents and children on what would be the best pet for them. We allow you to experience some of the joys they bring to the world, educate you on the importance they have in their wild environment and challenges they face.
”We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate for having taken form so far below ourselves. For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings: they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travail of the earth.” – Harry Beston
The meerkat enclosures are a mish mash of soil, sand, bark, logs and tunnels. They are quite partial to disemboweling teddies, like toys that ping and love a scatter feeding mealworms fest!
You may find it very strange that they live together and still so do we! Some of the animals are able to interact with one another and one day as i went to put the armadillo back in his enclosure i found him snuggled up with the skunks. Being a screaming armadillo having never heard him do it before when i went to remove him he screamed at me!! I left him and tried again later and he did it again. So we decided to leave him in there keeping a close eye on them and until this day (2 years on) i have never heard him do it since and the skunks love him too. Their enclosure is made up of bark and top soil with a concrete underlay as both are great diggers. They have logs to climb on and hide under. They are soon due a few tonnes of soil and next spring we will be building a ‘play area’ for them all.
Sven has a two storey enclosure and is about the size of a hamster. He has a little play area upstairs and down stairs he has tunnels and lots of sand and soil to dig in! He loves DIGGING! Unfortunately Sven had to have one eye removed due to an ulcer but it has no affect on him and he is still a happy little guy with a fat tail!
We have two chinchillas yet our black chinchilla Sophia does not like going out and is just company for Stanley as they live in social groups in the wild. Stanley has been done and so we do not breed them. They are obsessed with their wheel, love a sand bath and are trying to win the world poop award!
Gliders live in rain forests and we provide apple branches which are safe to chew. We have to replace them regularly because glider wee honks! They are able to glide and there are loads of pouches to choose from which they sleep in, a ball bit in the hanging basket we fill with insects for them to find and tunnels. Their favorite thing to do is jump on us and not go back when i feed them EVERY NIGHT!
It only just occurred to me that i didnt get a picture of the full enclosure. It actually have 4 levels. I will update this in good time! hedgehogs are hard to entertain so we only ever scatterfeed the hedgehogs to keep them occupied at night and use treat balls. They also have a wheel at the bottom. They can run about 3 miles in a night and because they are smelly gits they poo in their wheel and run it in at the same time…very delightful but they are so cute we dont care!
Our raccoons are only brought out for events where we feel we can tend to their needs so we ask that you do not book an event based on the raccoons to avoid disappointment. They are young and active and have ants in their pants!! The enclosure is being extended over spring 2017 when they have got the hang of climbing properly as it will be higher. The raccoons love raiding our pockets, a bottle of puppy milk, carrying around teddies, swimming/paddling and tummy tickles.