Welcome to Devon 247, the county’s newest news, features, blog and sport platform.

This site has merged with The Plymouth Daily to offer even more of the content readers have told us they enjoy so much.

And, as with Plymouth, you can post your own content for free on D247 by clicking here.

Our focus is on positive, community news which, sadly, seems to be in short supply these days.

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Zoo keepers save animals after storm damage

Authored by Paigntonzoo

Keepers at Paignton Zoo saved scores of animals after recent storms damaged a key building.

High winds ripped open a 36-metre-long air vent in the roof of Reptile Tropics at around 7.30 one morning, exposing vulnerable animals, plants and electrics. Staff rushed to save lizards, snakes, turtles, iguanas, chameleons and geckos as the temperature in the building dropped. Meanwhile,...

New partnership to help Bay’s underwater rainforest

Authored by Paigntonzoo

Two local names with international reputations are joining forces to help a very special - but largely unknown - species. Living Coasts, Torquay’s coastal zoo and aquarium, is linking up with Valeport, the Totnes-based underwater measuring instrumentation specialists.

The focus of their partnership is seagrass, a remarkable plant that flowers underwater and forms dense meadows in...

Paignton Zoo’s new Changing Places facility will change lives

Authored by Paigntonzoo

People with a range of disability and accessibility needs have started the new decade on a happy note thanks to Paignton Zoo. The conservation charity has joined forces with the National Lottery and accessibility experts Closomat to provide a new Changing Places toilet.

Changing Places toilets have more room and more equipment than standard accessible toilets. The zoo’s new facility is...

Zoo says good bye to Lucifer

Authored by Paigntonzoo

Paignton Zoo is sad to announce that senior male lion Lucifer has had to be put to sleep.

Zoo spokesperson Phil Knowling: “Lucifer was 17 years old, so he was a good age for an Asiatic lion. He was, like a lot of us, showing signs of wear and tear on his body. He had some weakness and ataxia – that’s wobbliness in his hind limbs – he would stagger occasionally, especially when going up...

Circus of Horrors is on the hunt for new blood!

Authored by Sarah Parker

You don't have to be a bottle blond to join the outrageous Circus of Horrors but you may be asked to fit in a bottle.

The Circus of Horrors were looking for a new Pickled Person to join their show for their performances in Exeter Corn Exchange on the 22nd June.

All applicants thinking of auditioning will have to fit into a bottle measuring only 2' tall & 18'' in diameter...

How to train your…

Authored by Paigntonzoo

If animal training makes you think of tricks and shows, think again. Top zoos use training to improve animal welfare, reduce the need for risky general anaesthetics and to keep both animals and people safe.

For example, bird keeper Sam Gray has trained Alfie Junior the Southern cassowary – as tall as a person and part bird, part dinosaur – to follow a target, which means she can get...

Gentle by nature?

Authored by Paigntonzoo

Paignton Zoo has welcomed a new species – the wonderfully-named gentle lemur. There’s more than a little of the teddy bear about them, with their thick, grey-brown fur and beady amber eyes. The babies are said to be especially cute – and the zoo certainly hopes to see babies in due course.

The gentle lemur – more correctly, the Alaotran gentle lemur - is the only primate that lives...

Living Coasts - everyone's local zoo

Authored by Paigntonzoo

We all love local. Local is about communities and families and neighbourhoods. Eating local reduces food miles. Shopping local stimulates the economy. Visiting local is great for attractions on your doorstep.

The weekend of 16th and 17th November is Locals’ Weekend at Living Coasts, when local people can visit Torquay’s coastal zoo for half price. On this occasion, local means anyone...

On the wing: in celebration of the feather

Authored by Paigntonzoo

Paignton Zoo bird keeper Lisa Jones freely admits that she has an interest that borders on obsession. She’s fascinated by feathers.

“During the summer months, lots of birds at Paignton Zoo start to moult… I think feathers are among the natural world’s most incredible adaptations. While I was cleaning out the Ural owls, who are moulting heavily now, I wondered if anyone else would be as...

Trust announces star patrons

Authored by Paigntonzoo

A major South West conservation charity has announced its patrons. Both are star names regionally and nationally.

Naturalist Nick Baker and broadcaster Judi Spiers have been unveiled as patrons of Wild Planet Trust, the charity that runs Paignton Zoo, Living Coasts in Torquay and Newquay Zoo in Cornwall.

These are the first patrons that the Trust, previously known as Whitley...

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