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Council help feed hungry mouths at Chester Zoo

Wood waste, from work carried out on trees across the borough for safety reasons, has been donated to Chester Zoo to help feed the animals.

The council’s tree contractor, Man Coed VM Ltd, carry out tree safety works on behalf of the council to protect resident safety. For works completed since Chester Zoo called for help, the council’s contractor has made sure that the tree waste has been taken to the zoo.

The first donation was made on Monday 8 June from work at Birkenhead Park on a Sycamore tree. Additional donations have included Oak to feed to the Elephants and brash (leafy branches) to feed the Rhinos.

Cllr Liz Grey, Cabinet Member for Environment and Climate Change at Wirral Council, says: "The current situation has had a significant impact on the region and Chester Zoo is no exception. Chester Zoo is the site of significant conservation work and it is so important that we continue to support the zoo, particularly in light of the biodiversity crisis.

“The tree waste has been reused to help feed a number of species at the zoo including Oak, Sycamore and brash to feed the elephants and rhinos.

“In line with the council’s response to Climate Emergency, reduce, reuse and recycle could never be more important and this is the perfect example of how other people, and in this case animals, can benefit from something that someone else may consider waste.

“There is an important lesson around support and consideration for those around us that we can all learn from and I am pleased that the council is able to play its part and highlight how important it is to support one another, both now and going forward.”

Man Coed VM Ltd will maintain contact with Chester Zoo, so that, where possible, any further work carried out on behalf of Wirral Council, can continue to support the zoo.

Ben Llewellyn, Operations Manager for Man Coed, says: “We have worked in partnership with Wirral Council for seven years carrying out tree safety works on the highway, parks and cemeteries.

“As you can imagine, this produces many tonnes of wood waste. Whether it is community projects such as those at Royden Park or Dale Farm, allotments, recycled for biomass or of course Chester Zoo, we are now in the position whereby all of the waste we produce is recycled for something else.

“This is brilliant for the borough of Wirral and for the people living there and it is really something we are all proud of.”

These initiatives and community projects completed by Man Coed VM Ltd contribute to the Social Value the company have pledged to Wirral Council through the tree management contract.

Chester Zoo recently did a call out to local tree surgeons and farm owners who are able to donate trees to help feed, the more than 21,000 hungry mouths at the zoo. The tree species needed include Willow, Ash, Maple, Oak, Sycamore, Apple, Lime, Beech, Elm, Plane, Poplar, Hazel and Hawthorn.