When will 'The Zoo' season 8 return to our screens?

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‘The Zoo’ will make its highly anticipated return to RTÉ One on April 8 2018.

The hugely popular TV series, which is now in its eighth season, will air on Sundays at 7.30pm, making it perfect viewing for the whole family.

Over the course of the new series, ‘The Zoo’ will showcase the passion and expertise the team at Dublin Zoo has for the animals in their care. Viewers will be able to follow the happenings at the zoo over eight episodes during an incredibly exciting time for all involved!

In episode one, we see Sari, a Bornean orangutan soon to make a move from Barcelona Zoo, introduced to Dublin Zoo’s dominant male orangutan, Sibu, through an international programme dubbed ‘Tinder for Orangutans’.

Sibu the Orangutan

Zookeepers will break the ice between the pair via video link, before Sari joins the family permanently. The idea is that zookeepers will be able to study respective reactions and gain insight into what they might be looking for in a prospective mate.

With an ever-declining population, innovative techniques such as Tinder for Orangutans could prove to be important to the efficiency of breeding and conservation efforts of the species worldwide.

Gorilla keepers Brendan and James

We’ll also welcome many new arrivals to Dublin Zoo’s wildlife family as Asha, the very first Asian elephant born at Dublin Zoo 10 years ago, gets ready to give birth to a calf of her own.

Other new additions include two rhino calves, African painted dog pups, baby mangabeys and Goeldi’s monkeys, to name but a few.

What’s more, two young hand-reared western lowland gorillas, Vana and Tebogo, arrive from Stuttgart Zoo in Germany to join the troop in Dublin Zoo’s Gorilla Rainforest.

The team also face some worrying times as they take every measure possible to save one of the Dublin Zoo’s most iconic animals and beloved inhabitants, Henry the hippopotamus who falls ill.

This series, the zookeepers venture outside of the Phoenix Park once again, to visit Irish conservation projects supported by Dublin Zoo, including the nesting site of barn owls in Kerry, where Susan has a fascinating encounter with some barn owl chicks.

The elephant team

Further afield, zookeepers Ciarán and Aisling travel to Indonesia to witness the work being done by the Orangutan foundation in Borneo. Sandra, Registrar/Research and Conservation Coordinator, travels to the forests of Sulawesi and finds out first-hand some of the threats Sulawesi crested macaques face in the wild.

We see the refurbishment of Dublin Zoo’s Robert House which becomes Zoorassic World the zoo’s new home for reptiles of the past and present. The centre piece is Stan, a life-size replica fossil skeleton of a male adult Tyrannosaurus rex that lived 65 million years ago!

We also journey back in time with Gerry, Helen and historian Catherine De Courcy, to see some incredible archive footage of Dublin Zoo way back when.

Don’t miss episode one this coming Sunday, April 8 at 7.30pm. Follow the conversation on twitter @DublinZoo, or on the series Facebook page

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