The health of the Zoo’s majestic geriatric free-range peacock Harold, who we shared was being treated at our Vet Hospital for a severe crop infection a few weeks back, unfortunately took a turn for the worse last week, and sadly but most kindly, he had to be euthanased.

A much-loved member of the Zoo whānau – including many regular visitors - for close to 20 years, our keepers say Harold was a “charismatic wanderer, a real Houdini at times, and an adventurer whose bravery knew no bounds”! This ‘Adventures of Harold’ video of him visiting our rhinos during lockdown last year is true testament to this!

Animal Experiences team leader, Lizzy, says the legendary Harold’s musical “honk” and provocative tail shimmy was a sight to behold, with only the female guinea fowl seemingly immune to his charms”, and he was renowned for knowing all the short cuts around the Zoo. “Harold would mysteriously travel across the Zoo, frequenting every animal keeper kitchen for a smorgasbord of treats”, recalls Lizzy. Harold fan Ian, our Stores Coordinator, whose office was a favourite spot for Harold to retreat to on hot days, says Harold just seemed to know when Zoo’s weekly supply of insects (for feeding out to various animals) would arrive, and would catch him unsuccessfully trying to peek through a box.

Haere rā Harold – we thank you for being so irrepressibly colourful in every possible way! You will be fondly remembered and missed by us all.