School friends turn keepers

Tickling a tapir was the best part of an exciting Keeper for a Day for 10-year-old Louise Collins and her best friend, Maddie Cluxton.

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As part of their day, which was a treat for Louise’s birthday, the school friends fed penguins and meerkats and also met snakes, ferrets, chinchillas and lizards.

Louise, who travelled two hours from her home in Dronfield said: “I thought that the day overall was really good and I enjoyed it all. The keeper was funny and she knew a lot about the animals.

“I chose Dudley Zoo because I had been wanting to do a zoo keeper experience for a long time so had been looking on the internet. I must have looked at about 20 or more, possibly every zoo we could travel to, however this one looked the best and most fun.

“While we were there I learnt that zoo keepers don’t only cuddle and stroke animals, they also have to clean them out too!”