Among the Animals: A Zookeeper's Story

Noel Virtue, Author
Noel Virtue, Author Peter Owen Publishers $31.95 (191p) ISBN 978-0-7206-0709-3
Reviewed on: 11/28/1989
Release date: 12/01/1989
Virtue, who has given up zookeeping to become a novelist, here offers an engaging memoir about his experiences among animals. He relates that at age 20 he left his native New Zealand for London and the Regent's Park Zoo, where he took formal training in animal management. Assigned to the aviary, he found a special interest in storks and cranes and played ``Mum'' to ostrich chicks. After an interval back in New Zealand, he returned to England to work at two small zoos before becoming head keeper at the Welsh Mountain Zoo at Colwyn Bay. There he had the opportunity to care for a wide variety of birds and mammals: Annabelle, an orphaned goat; Abdul, a tame eagle who often refused to perform; Pwtyn, an Indian elephant who needed a companion. One of Virtue's most touching tales is of the introduction of Melys, a baby Indian elephant, to Pwtyn. This is a book that leaves the reader in a state of contentment. Photos. ( June )
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