Special Moments Recreated as Former Flamingo Keeper visits ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

  • Octogenarian Leslie Wesson, a former zookeeper at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo paid a visit to his former workplace this week and recreated some special moments from his time there.   

86-year-old Leslie Wesson took a trip down memory lane at the UK’s largest zoo, visiting the zoo’s penguin colony and flock of flamingos – species he used to care for in his zookeeping days.  The veteran-keeper was keen to get stuck in and helped feed the colony of rockhopper penguins their lunch. 


The former keeper, who now lives in Essex, shared a black and white image of himself in the 1950s, walking two of the Zoo’s flamingos to their winter quarters - he was pictured again this week saying hello to the flamingo flock 70 years later.  


Owen Craft, ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Chief Operating Officer said; “We were so pleased to welcome Leslie along with his family back to our Zoo many years after his zookeeping days, and it was wonderful to hear some of the stories he shared.  


“It’s been a tough period for us here at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo, but one thing that has kept us going has been the unwavering support from our people and visitors. Mr Wesson’s visit is a wonderful example of the long-lasting impact Whipsnade has on people, and its legacy on so many generations.” 


ZSL, the international conservation charity behind ZSL Whipsnade Zoo, is working around the world to protect animals and their habitats. Help this vital work continue by booking a ticket, becoming a member or donating at www.zsl.org

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