Persuading two black rhinos to stand still is the ultimate weigh-in challenge.
But Hodari and Dayo, who tip the scales at 3, 000lbs, were models of calm behaviour during the annual Yorkshire Wildlife Park animal audit.
The playful pair, who arrived this year, may weigh the same as a family estate car but they were happy to have their vital statistics recorded.
Staff at the 100-acre park have just completed a week-long audit of all creatures great and small who make up the unique attraction at Branton.
From rhinos to beetles and from lizards to giraffes, all 464 animals from 80 species were measured and weighed as part of a national campaign to monitor the nation’s wildlife park and zoo populations. Hodari and Dayo, two-year-old males of the critically endangered black rhinos, are expected to be even weightier next year as the they grow and thrive in their new reserve.
Simon Marsh, the park’s animal collection manager, said: “Getting the vital statistics of so many varied species takes a log of planning and ingenuity but the staff are experts at doing it quickly and efficiently. The audit is a great opportunity to take stock of what conservation means as we focus on all the animals and the importance of making sure their species are with us into the future.”
Playful Amur tiger cubs Hector, Harley and Hope gave staff the run around their nine-acre Land of the Tigers reserve before having their details logged. Staff used a variety of weighing scales, measuring during the week-long process.
They also needed tasty treats to entice some of the rare creatures for their measuring moments, particularly to coax the six-banded armadillo out of its protective curled up ball.