LONDON — Gibbons Jimmy and Yoda, Max the Eurasian eagle owl and Bhanu the lion have stood up to be counted as London Zoo conducts its annual audit of creatures big and small.

Zookeepers tallied 19,289 animals in the annual count of every mammal, bird, reptile, fish, amphibian and insect at the famous zoo.

The penguins, at least, made it easy Wednesday, lining up flipper to flipper. Some concessions are made. Ants, for example, are counted en masse.

This year’s event was delayed after a fire just before Christmas that killed four meerkats and an aardvark.

But Mark Haben of the Zoological Society of London says the count “brought everyone together and really allowed us all to support each other, and really focus on our animal breeding for this year.”


This story has been corrected to show that Jimmy and Yoda are gibbons, not Galapagos tortoises. The headline has been corrected to show that there are no aardvarks at the zoo.

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.