London Zoo has released a series of X-rays of exotic creatures to showcase their work over the past decade.
The archive images include X-rays of a critically endangered big-headed turtle, Humboldt penguin chicks, and a Western diamondback rattlesnake, and were all taken during the zoo’s work to care for more than 14,000 animals and 400 species.
The zoo’s veterinary team said the scans were vital in helping diagnose any problems and ensure the animals remained “in tip-top condition.”
Sophie Sparrow, senior veterinary nurse, said: “Many of the species in our care are threatened in the wild and are part of important global breeding programs.
“This means we have far less medical information about them in existence than we do for domestic animals, so we share vital information from X-rays such as these with vets and conservationists around the world, helping to improve animal and veterinary care globally.”
The images have been shared ahead of the conservation zoo’s Vets In Action event between February 11 and 19, which will see children join the vet team during the spring half-term to learn more about their work.
“A trip to the vet is a little more complicated for a lion than it is for a house cat, so we work with zookeepers to make any treatment needed as simple as possible for the animals – for example, keepers build training for healthcare into the animals’ daily routines,” Ms. Sparrow said.
“So when they need to have simple procedures, such as a blood test, animals like Bhanu, our Asiatic lion, are happy to simply offer up their tail for a blood draw, instead of having a general anesthetic.”