1.5.10

MEERKAT
POST & LOVE

The general election might be turning a little
“katty” but that’s not going to stop London
Zoo’s meerkats from placing
their postal vote.

With forms arriving on doormats from Friday
the Zoo’s meerkats have been posting their
own to remind the British public
how“simples” it is to vote.

Eleven meerkats who live in the Zoo’s Animal
Adventure exhibit were given their very
own red postbox so they can get
involved in the election.

The postbox was there to stimulate the meerkats
natural curiosity, as unusual objects are always
worth investigating and the group love
having the chance to be nosey.

Zookeeper Robert Harland said: “Meerkats all
work for the good of the group and often make
decisions together so they will probably
all vote for the same party.”


Some meerkat facts: Meerkats, a member of the
mongoose family, originate from the south of the
Kalahari Desert in Africa. The animals live
in extensive burrow systems. They feed
on insects, small mammals,
scorpions and snakes.

In a mob of meerkats one of the group acts as
sentry on a high vantage point, while the others
forage for food. Black hair around their eyes
enables them to scan the bright sky for
predators and a variety of calls warns
the group to hide when danger is near.

Also in the meerkat news this week: Lilly the lonely
meerkat has finally found love after staff at
Twinlakes Park set up meerkatmatch.com,
an online dating site for meerkats.

Staff at the park in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire,
set up the site after failing to find a male
mate for the single meerkat.

The site describes the three-year-old as an
'alert, dark-eyed, inquisitive, free spirited
lady with a good sense of humour who enjoys
fine dining, digging and cosy nights in.'

The site drew in over 74,000 visitors before
a breeder offered a match for love struck Lilly.
Named Mr Darcy, the two-year-old from
Cambridge has since joined Lily at the
park, where the pair are said to
be settling in well.

Emma Roe, office manager, said: "We are delighted
to have found Lilly a partner. Meerkats live in large
social groups and within the group there is only
one dominant breeding pair. He was an
underdog in a mob of nine and the ideal catch
for Lilly. Having no name we felt 'Mr Darcy'
was appropriate for our romantic hero."

Park manager Sandy Gyorvari added: "He's lovely,
he's very nice mannered, and they're getting on
really well.With her being on her own for a while,
we were worried she had become a bit humanised
and how she would react to another meerkat -
she was either going to accept him or not -
but it's worked out really well. She's actually
become quite possessive over him."



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