RTE Television

The Zoo

Much-loved series The Zoo makes its anticipated return to RT One on 2 April. The show will air in a new timeslot of 6.30pm on Sundays, making it perfect viewing for the whole family.

Back for a seventh season, 'The Zoo' will once again showcase the passion and expertise the team at Dublin Zoo has for the animals in their care. This season, viewers will be able to follow the happenings at the Zoo over eight episodes during an incredibly exciting time for all involved there!

This series there is great excitement at the Gorilla Rainforest when the keepers discover that Lena, the Western lowland gorilla, is pregnant. Viewers can see how her pregnancy progresses right up to the moment when she gives birth and feeds her new born baby for the first time. An impressive new habitat the Orangutan Forest, inspired by the natural environment of the Bornean orangutans, the tropical rainforests of Borneo, opens at the Zoo. Viewers can watch the Bornean orangutans take their first steps into their new habitat and meet their new neighbours, the siamang gibbons, who they will be sharing their home with.

The new series will once again leave the Phoenix Park to follow the zookeepers as they visit some of the Irish and international conservation projects supported by Dublin Zoo. Helen Clarke-Bennett takes an incredible journey deep into the swamps and rainforests of the Republic of the Congo to visit a project dedicated to helping protect forest elephants and Western lowland gorillas. Closer to home the Dublin Zoo team will visit some fascinating Irish conservation projects, including protecting lapwing chicks in the Irish countryside and going out on call with Hedgehog Rescue Dublin.

Other stories include a lion cub with an injured leg receiving attention from zoo keepers and a Sumatran tiger with a toothache requires a dental appointment with the veterinary team. Of course, there's plenty of time for fun too when we catch up with the progress of Dublin Zoo's eldest elephant calves Kavi, Ashoka and Samiya. Other species featured this season include meerkats, two-toed sloth, southern white rhinoceros, green tree python, Asian leaf turtle, red panda, red river hogs, African painted dogs, scimitar-horned oryx and many others.

The Zoo is produced and directed by Shane Brennan and John Higgins of Moondance Productions for RT One and is narrated by Tom Dunne.

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Episode 1

There's excitement at the Gorilla Rainforest when zookeepers discover that Lena the Western lowland gorilla might be pregnant.

At Dublin Zoo's South American House a veterinary team is called in to examine the two-toed sloth, the slowest mammal in the world.

And the animal care team get busy with some home improvements for the meerkat habitat.

Episode 2

There's cause for concern at the giraffe habitat when Robyn the giraffe's health takes an unexpected turn for the worse.

At Sea Lion Cove it's training time for California sea lion Sienna who zookeeper suspect might be pregnant.

And at Dublin Zoo's Reptile House, Lee gets to grips with one of his favourite snakes, a green tree python.

Episode 3

When not working as a zookeeper at Dublin Zoo, Yvonne does voluntary work with her charity Hedgehog Rescue Dublin. This week she's on call for any hedgehogs in distress who might need her help.

The Asian leaf turtle habitat gets a makeover from Garth and Lee at the Reptile House.

Meanwhile, Helen makes an incredible journey deep into the swamps and rainforests of the Republic of the Congo to visit a project which Dublin Zoo supports.

Episode 4

Helen comes face to face with a troop of Western lowland gorillas in the wild rainforests of the Republic of the Congo.

Ken and John have looked after Jubari, the rhino, since he was a young calf. Now old enough now to start a herd of his own, the time has come for the zookeepers to say goodbye to one of their favourites.

And Yvonne gives a helping hand to a sick hedgehog before returning him to the wild.

Episode 5

Susan and Aisling introduce two new red pandas to each other for the first time, how will they get on?

Helen and the animal care team at the African Plains become worried when a red river hog loses its appetite.

And the elephant calves cool off from the warm sun with a playtime wallow in the mud bath.

Episode 6

At the African painted dog habitat, there's great excitement when three new male dogs join Dublin Zoo's resident pack of three females.

Garth travels into the Irish countryside to visit a conservation project Dublin Zoo supports which protects lapwing chicks.

And a Sumatran tiger with a toothache gets some emergency dental surgery.

Episode 7

Ciaran and the animal care team are worried when an Asian lion cub seems to have broken its leg. But what will be revealed when the veterinary team perform an x-ray?

A new female scimitar-horned oryx joins the herd. Hopes are high for a new calf, but how will she get on with the dominant male?

And Brendan brings his passion for primates to Dublin's iconic Natural History Museum

Episode 8

In the season finale, there's great excitement at the Gorilla Rainforest as Lena the Western lowland gorilla gets closer to giving birth. But the animal care team are worried when Harry the silverback falls ill.

Meanwhile the orangutans at Dublin Zoo take their first steps out into a fantastic new habitat The Orangutan Forest, but how will they get on with their boisterous new neighbours, the siamang gibbons?