Glasgow Zoo Park
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Gardens, Gardening.

Glasgow ZooPark lies among leafy trees with a river running through the grounds. Originally the zoo was termed as a Zoological Garden and visitors often find themselves returning to our grounds for their beauty which complement the animals of the zoo.

Glasgow, well known as The Dear Green Place has latterly been losing a fair number of its green places as they disappear under urban developments. From Robroyston, to Govan, Partick to Baillieston the natural environment has been placed under increasing pressure along with the animals and birds which used to be so prevalent. Even the humble starling's numbers have plummetted in recent years.

Thank-goodness Glasgow Zoopark remains an oasis of tranquillity among the increasing bustle of the city.

Meal worm breeding

Gardeners - think about bonfires affecting hedgehogs


Gardeners - mind your lawnmower with hedgehogs about

Trees to be seen at Glasgow Zoopark
The Wildlife Garden at Glasgow Zoo
The Wildlife Garden in 1990, now it is much matured.

The Wildlife Garden at Glasgow Zoo was created on a site which for years was a little used piece of land which the Zoo used as an area to plant excess trees and shrubs. In early 1985 Scottish Conservation Projects (SCP) were approached by Clyde Calders Urban Fringe Management Project with a view to designing and constructing a wildlife garden. At this time the site was fairly featureless save for a large depression in the centre, some willow scrub in the south-eastern corner and a scattered mix of immature native and exotic trees and shrubs.

It has now been transformed into a garden which demonstrates a diverse range of natural habitats thus providing Glasgow Zoo's Education Service with a valuable teaching resource.


The History and the Aims


Wildlife Garden Guide

  1. Scrub Woodland (Goat willow, birch, ash) : An open, pioneer woodland that allows a thick grand cover below its canopy and will provide shelter and food for many creatures.
  2. Wildflower Meadow (sown) Flowers include: Oxeye Daisy, Ribwort Plantain, Meadow Buttercup, Catsear, Autumn Hawkbit, Tufted Vetch, Goatsbeard, Yellow Vetchling, Kidney Vetch, Black Knapweed, Germander Speedwell. The flowers will provide butterflies with food and the long grass will conceal small rodents.
  3. Pond : A habitat for many creatures that cannot exist elsewhere. There has been a tremendous loss of wet sites throughout Britain during the last few decades. This pond is a home for: Frogs, Toads, Newts, Sticklebacks, Diving Beetles and Dragonflies, amongst others.
  4. Mixed Thorn Hedge : Includes Blackthorn, Hawthorn, Bramble, Dog Rose, Cherry and Hazel. An important habitat for birds and small mammals. Many such hedges have been uprooted from our countryside to increase field sizes.
  5. Brambles/Dog Rose : Two important ground cover plants, they form dense thickets which will give shelter to a huge variety of animals and birds. The fruits of the brambles are eaten by rodents, birds and even foxes. Amongst these shrubs are fallen logs which will rot to feed fungi and insects.
  6. Alder Carr : The common Alder (Alnus glutinosa) is capable of growing in the wettest of sites as nodules in the trees roots help produce nitrogen.
  7. Goat Willow : A very common small tree which is often undervalued. It is capable of growing in the poorest of soils and can support an enormous variety of insects.
  8. Mixed Deciduous Woodland (Established) : Trees include Oak, Ash, Rowan, Alder, Hazel, Hawthorn and Blackthorn. This area represents the trees found in an established native woodland.
  9. Mixed Deciduous Woodland(Pioneer) : Trees include Birch, Rowan , Ash, Hawthorn and Alder. This area represents the trees found in an establishing woodland.
  10. Moorland : This is an attempt to recreate a small piece of Scottish moorland. The area has a drystane wall (dyke), heather, tormentil and cotton grass.

Worksheets, information leaflets for teachers and a range of educational activities can be made available to visiting parties. To arrange a booking contact us.

Winter Care of Ponds

In freezing weather, pond owners often wonder what to do about the surface of their ponds. When the water freezes and turns to ice, it expands. This can damage the sides of the pond, especially if it is made of something inflexible like vertical concrete. Sides which slope out, permitting the ice to slide up the walls, reduce the chances of damage. Yhe expansion effect can be greatly minimised by floating kiddies rubber footballs, or empty wasking-up liquid bottles on the pond. As the ice expands, these are squashed, relieving the pressure. If you feel your fish need air, even if they don't need food, new owners often wonder about breaking the ice. The shockwaves can damage fish, and a far kinder solution is to rest a kettle or saucepan of hot water, secured by string, on the ice until it melts.

Gardens Wildlife Conservation Role

To find out how important the wildlife conservation role of the British garden is, the Mammal Society and the People's Trust for Endangered Species have embarked on a study.
The project runs until February 1999 and there's a booklet to help garden owners spot signs of mammals in their gardens.
To take part, send an SAE to:

James Hargreave, Mammal Society, 15 Cloisters House, 8 Battersea Park Road, London, SW8 4BJ

Scot's Thistle
Snails versus gardeners: be nice to your local snails!

Squirrels versus gardeners: are they a real enemy?