Saturday, 29 August 2009


I am writing to thank you for your generosity. As a member of the 3rd Ryde Girls Brigade I would like to say how much I thoroughly enjoyed our recent day out donated to us at your Park Seaview Wildlife Encounter.

I thought this sort of gesture needed to be thanked personally seeing as such a wonderful day was had by all of us. I personally enjoyed feeding the penguins and wallabies and seeing your new Otters.

Thank you,

Katie. (A 3rd Ryde Girls' Brigade)

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Celebrating the arrival of our Chilean Flamingo chicks!

We're thrilled to announce that our Chilean Flamingos (Phoenicopterus Chilensis) have hatched three chicks so far this season. Having had a two year lull in our breeding programme these chicks are particularly special!

Chilean Flamingos: a few facts about their breeding habits

- Reach sexual maturity at 6 years of age.
- Usually form new pairs each season.
- Breeding adults build nests by forming mounds of mud measuring approx 15 inches in diameter, 1-2 feet high - being elevated helps protect nest from heat and flooding at ground level. Indentation is made on top of mound where female lays one chalky white egg.
- Both parents incubate the egg for approximately 28 - 30 days.
- On hatching the chick is covered with grey down. Its bill is initially straight to allow parents to feed by regurgitation; it curves after a few months.
- It takes approximately 2 years for the chick to grow into its adult plumage.

Tuesday, 25 August 2009



I would like to say a big thank you and how much we really enjoyed our visit to your Park. Both our girls loved the interaction with the animals which at most animal based parks they are either caged or behind glass.

Our youngest daughter Sophie loved the wallabies and they seemed to really like her as they were so tame and let her touch and admire them. We also found your staff very friendly and they even took the time out to answer our eldest daughter Megans questions regarding animal habitats and diets.

We will definately be visiting you again on our next trip to the Isle Of Wight.

Thank you again. Laurrie, Steve, Megan and Sophie.

Thursday, 20 August 2009


What are you and your family up to this August Bank Holiday Weekend? We’ve got lots going on at Seaview Wildlife Encounter including a very important fund raising event. This is your chance to get involved in a really special project …….
One of our Senior Head Keepers (Tara Hayter, pictured above) has volunteered to go to Cape Town for 6 weeks in October of this year – to assist with the rescue and care of African Penguins and other marine birds that have been orphaned or affected by oil spills off the Cape coast.

The work of saving and rehabilitating African Penguins and other marine birds is organized by SANCCOB (Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds).
SANCCOB aims to conserve and protect South Africa´s sea birds, especially threatened species (such as the African Penguin and the Cape Gannet). It relies on volunteers for the hard work needed to save and care for approximately 2000 sea birds that are rescued each year. This project has tugged at our heart-strings because the African (Jackass) Penguin is so similar to our resident Humboldt Penguins – both in terms of appearance, their braying call and because both species are endangered with numbers dwindling rapidly in the wild.

How can you help? Well, over the August Bank Holiday weekend we’ll be raising funds towards Tara’s trip and towards the conservation of the African Penguin. By coming to our Park you can have fun helping to feed our penguins at 11.30am and 3.30pm whilst supporting this worthwhile cause. Tara will have a few of her beautiful hand-sketched cards and pictures for sale at the fund-raising tables (see examples of these exquisite drawings under Tara's 'keeper profile' on our website). There’ll be a number of fun activities such as face-painting, penguin foot-printing, and the chance to choose a name for one of our baby penguins! Prizes include ‘being a keeper for a day’; feeding Willaby (our young orphaned Wallaby Joey) - and having your photo taken with him; and a free entrance ticket to our Park for a family of four. See you there!

Friday, 14 August 2009



Hi to you all at Seaview,

My husband and I spent a very enjoyable day with you all on Thursday 6th August. We were really pleased to see how much space each set of animals had, also how VERY clean all the cages and surroundings were, no nasty smells or bored looking animals. Our day started well when we were met in the car park and directed to a parking space and things only got better, a lovely gift shop and cafe all staffed by people who were pleased to serve you, and most important of all happy animals who were cared for by very caring and knowledgable keepers.

It really made up for a very disappointing experience earlier in the week at another animal venue.

See you all again in the future,

Best Wishes,

From Mr. & Mrs. Wyatt.



I so wanted to email you to say what a wonderful place the Park is.

We came today 12th August myself, my sister, my daughter, her partner and their 1 year old son Archie.

We had such a wonderful day. I have never been somewhere that is so hands on. We as adults loved it as did Archie. The animals and birds are so well looked after and are so happy you can tell ~ they let you touch them and love it! The Park is clean and so well presented and all this for £6 is amazing. I have NEVER stroked a wallaby before, or fed penguins. To be able to feed the birds with the seed was just amazing cannot believe they keep eating all day!

Bargain price, wonderful park would reccommend to everyone. Thank you for a wonderful day out and the wonderful job that you all do there with such passion.

Kind regards,

A visitor from Winchester, Hampshire.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Update on Willaby, our orphaned albino Joey

We chose the name Willaby (suggested by an American lady who follows our blog); thank you to all those who put forward ideas! Willaby is doing really well. He's not only an accepted member of the Park's 'Wallaby Mob' but has also made friends with some of the resident animals in Pets Corner - including Fluffy the New Zealand giant albino rabbit (as captured in this photo!) Willaby still enjoys his supplementary liquid feeds from the keepers as well as grazing on the grass and tucking in to a range of fresh fruit and veg. He and our other Joeys are enjoying the extra attention of the Park's summer visitors!

Thursday, 6 August 2009

Incubation of special eggs at the Park

Seaview Wildlife Encounter has its own incubation house where eggs from rare and endangered species of birds are hatched and the young are cared for in their first few days of life. Incubators are used to replicate the conditions of natural incubation as closely as possible. Temperatures are maintained at around 40 degrees C and humidity levels are kept high (over 85%). The incubators automatically turn the eggs on their long axis at intervals throughout the day - hatching does not occur without some amount of egg rotation. The growing embryos need oxygen and give off carbon dioxide. This takes place with hot air rising in the incubator (as natural convection) – removing carbon dioxide through air holes in the top of the machine and drawing in oxygen from below.

It is fairly commonplace for keepers at the Park to rescue eggs that have been abandoned by the parent birds. If the eggs have been un-brooded for a period of up to 2 weeks they can still be incubated and successfully hatched – this incredible phenomenon is called ‘diapause’ – brought about by cold torpor (cool temperatures and low humidity levels) temporarily suspending the development of the embryo. The embryo begins its development once correctly incubated – whether under the parent bird or in the incubator! The gestation period for most eggs ranges between 21 and 30 days – after which ‘pipping’ occurs – this is when the chick starts to break out of the shell using its egg tooth. At this point the eggs are removed from the incubator and placed in a ‘brooder’ where hatching takes place and the youngsters spend the first day or two of life being monitored by keepers in this safe, warm, humid environment. Once the new arrival is feeding and moving around independently in the brooder it is moved to join other like-youngsters in one of our nursery boxes within the incubation house. The brooders and nursery boxes are on view to the public – we’ve been hatching out rare and common water fowl, guinea fowl and pea fowl on a continuous basis since early spring and although we’ll soon be coming to the end of our breeding season we expect to have the last of our hatchlings on view until the end of the summer holidays.

Saturday, 1 August 2009

A Visit from The Vet

As you can imagine things aren't always smooth sailing whem working with such a wide range of animals. As much as we try to prevent the ill health of the animals we look after, sometimes we need the expert advice from our local vet...Dr Green.

Over the years the keepers at the park have successfully hand reared a number of Humboldt Penguin chicks. This year however we have had one with a difference! One of our 9 Penguin chicks appeared to have an unusual lump on its back. The penguin doesn't seem to be in any discomfort and loves his fish and swimming but thought it wise to have Dr Green advise us on his condition and the effects it may have on his welfare in the future. Dr Green assured us that he wasn't in any pain and that it was a spine deformity that needs to be closely monitored. Unfortunatly he won't be able to breed in the future so he will remain with us at the Park.

Micro- chipping the Penguins

Humboldt Penguins are now endangered in South America and therefore it is required by DEFRA that these penguins are under licence. In order to apply for the licence each individual has to be micro-chipped.

Dr Green injected the micro-chip into each of our 9 young penguins that we hatched this year. Once the micro chip is inserted he uses a scanner to ensure that the micro chip has been administered correctly.