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Ongoing updates and improvements

Paddocks and parklands

The area around Monkey Heights used to be home to a whole array of hoof stock, from zebras to deer. Some of the stabling for the paddocks still exists – it’s now home to Amphibian Ark and Bugs at Home, although for much of the 80s and 90s it was The Ark: an interactive activity centre for visitors opened by TV star Johnny Morris.

chapmans zebra 1947
The buildings where Amphibian Ark now stands were once home to zebras.
ken smith with dannyboy eland
Renowned zoo expert Ken Smith worked at Paignton Zoo for a number of years. Here he is feeding an eland named Dannyboy.
paddocks
This area was also home to goats.
aerial paignton crop2
Aerial view of the paddocks, 1969. This was the area now occupied by the Education Centre, Great Gorilla Grill, Bugs at Home and Monkey Heights. The enclosure with the rock structure in it held barbary sheep, with the elephant enclosure to the left concealed by trees.
zebra paddocks
These sloping paddocks can still be seen, although they now have a different use.
stable paddocks then
These enclosures became The Ark before Bugs at Home was created here.

stable paddocks now ark
The Ark interactive visitors centre was opened by TV presenter Johnny Morris, who was known for the show ‘Animal Magic’.
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