Zoo Portraits Blog

In our blog you can find a lot of information about the animal kingdom, curiosities about different species and news about their protection.

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Vital viewing: 6 must-watch wildlife and nature documentaries

Vital viewing: 6 must-watch wildlife and nature documentaries

Below you have a hand-picked selection of wildlife and nature films with all the thrills, pains and delights of any blockbuster. There’s plenty magnificence and tragedy to marvel at on our planet, without the need to invent fantasy worlds. In compiling this list, two categories of documentary emerged. The first…

Spirit Bear Kermode

Have you ever heard of the Kermode bear, also known as the Spirit bear?

Deep within the Great Bear Rainforest, in Canada, all is not as it seems. The unique ecosystem produces strange natural scenes. On this coastal land, dampened by dense mist, we can still find indigenous tribes who began living there long before the white man arrived.

Christmas caribou (reindeer) and camel

Festive animal facts: Camel vs. Reindeer

The Christmas holidays are rich in tradition. Some (like decorating a tree) date back hundreds of years; others (like wearing tasteless woolen jumpers) are much more recent! Although customs differ from country to country, they all have a strong connection to nature. In the UK, the robin, mistletoe and holly are all…

Animal intelligence: the smartest animal species in the world

Animal intelligence: the smartest animal species in the world

We can define animal intelligence as the combination of skills and abilities that allow animals to live in and adapt to their specific environments. What does this actualy mean? Animals possess the ability to adapt to their surroundings by learning to change their habits and behaviours. Many species are also capable…

Animal Welfare

The five freedoms: animal welfare around the world

In the last week of November social media exploded in response to reports that the UK government had failed to recognise animal sentience. There was a lot of anger, followed by a great deal of confusion. What actually happened and what does it all mean for animal welfare in the UK? The vote was in relation to an…

Asian female eating cricket - Eating insect concept. Pic by wk1003mike | Shutterstock.com

Six-legged superfoods: could insects be the answer to food security?

Insects form a big part of everyday diets for around two billion people around the world. Yet, for many of the remaining 5.58 billion, just the thought of eating an insect is enough to cause revulsion. As the human population continues to rise, so does food insecurity. Shortages, aggravated by resource depletion and…

Pigeon powers: 3 reasons to start appreciating the 'rats of the sky'

Pigeon powers: 3 reasons to start appreciating the ‘rats of the sky’

Pigeons are divisive creatures. For some, pigeons are treasured pets; for others, they're troublesome pests. Whether it’s ‘rats of the sky’ or ‘rats with wings’, the sentiment in these nicknames is clear. Apart from pigeon fanciers or mediocre tourists in the main square of [insert any capital city], most of us have…

Borneo jungle trekking. Woman trekking through a small stream at Mulu National Park

Wildlife hotspots in Southeast Asia: Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Borneo

SE Asia is home to an extraordinary 20% of global plant, animal and marine species and boasts four biodiversity hotspots. From the tropical rainforests of Thailand to the islands of the Sunda Shelf, SE Asia has so much to offer nature-lovers. We’ve hand-picked a selection of must-see national parks and reserves from…

Invasive species. Bull Moose and Caribou

Controlling invasive species: 3 ways to join the fight

In Europe alone, there are around 16,000 plants, animals, fungi and micro-organisms that are alien to their natural environment. Of these, 15% pose a threat to biological diversity and can defined as ‘invasive’. Besides their impact on biodiversity, invasive alien species (IAS) can have enormous economic…

Invasive alien species

Unwanted Aliens: the impact of invasive species

According to the Convention on Biological Diversity, “an invasive alien species (IAS) is a species that is established outside of its natural past or present distribution, whose introduction and/or spread threaten biological diversity”. In other words, this can be any form of biota (flora, fauna, fungi, etc.) that…

Mosquito. Pic by Natnarong | Shutterstock.com

4 animals and their fascinating feeding habits

A part of growing up is learning how to eat, but mealtime etiquette can be a tricky business. From culture to culture, there are a range of elaborate rules that apply. For example, in China, leaving some food on the plate is a sign of politeness. While, the same gesture in Southern Italy may be seen as a grave insult.…

A polar bear sitting on the edge of an ice floe in the Svalbard Archipelago. Pic by Ritesh Chaudhary | Shutterstock.com

Beyond the Bear

For many, conservation is an emotional issue. Speaking on the BBC’s Life Scientific programme, conservation biologist Georgina Mace explains that people feel a connection to certain species. Unsurprisingly, these tend to be the more charismatic members of the animal world, often mammals like the giant panda or polar…