Animals at U.K. zoos celebrate King Charles III's coronation
Animals at ZSL's conservation zoos got into the royal spirit this week, after zookeepers put up red, white and blue bunting in preparation for the coronation weekend.
Critically Endangered Western Lowland gorillas and Bolivian black-capped squirrel monkeys woke up at London Zoo to find their home transformed by the decorations in honour of the historic event, while Charlie the Humboldt penguin represented his namesake, King Charles III, on London Zoo's iconic Penguin Beach.
Over at Whipsnade Zoo, meerkats Bibbity, Pixie and Joey tucked into some tasty and nutritious crickets underneath Union Jack bunting to mark the forthcoming festivities, while the conservation zoo's troop of endangered ring-tailed lemurs leapt agilely between bunting-covered branches to investigate their treats.
Both zoos are part of the international conservation charity ZSL, whose vital work has been supported by the Royal Family since 1826, when it was first granted a Royal Charter by King George IV.
Since then, every monarch, including the late Queen Elizabeth II, has served as ZSL's Royal Patron - inspiring support for nature by shining an important spotlight on the work of the conservation zoos and championing ZSL's wider work protecting species and restoring ecosystems across the world. King Charles III has been a supporter of ZSL since joining ZSL's Exceptional Young Zoologist Club aged just 13.
Visitors to Whipsnade Zoo can watch the conservation zoo's majestic herd of Endangered Asian elephants at the Centre for Elephant Care - home to young elephant Elizabeth, named after Her Majesty to celebrate her 90th birthday in 2016.