Mercedes, the first polar bear to occupy the exhibit at Kingussie. Photographed on her fourth day at the Park in October 2009. Mercedes died in April 2011, aged 27. (Aaron Sneddon) (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/deed.en)
Location: RZSS Highland Wildlife Park
Address: Kincraig, Kingussie, Inverness-shire, PH21 1NL, Scotland,UK
Telephone: +44 (0)1540 651 270
Victoria (female). Born in captivity in Rostock Zoo, Germany on 12 December 1996. Arrived at the Highland Wildlife Park 23 March 2015
Walker (male) Born in captivity in Ouwehands Zoo, Rhenen, Netherlands 7 December 2008. Arrived at the Highland Wildlife Park 11 May 2010.
The Highland Wildlife Park have been keeping polar bears since 2009 in this modern, thoughtfully designed exhibit.
The concept of the design was to provide the bears with an interesting and challenging environment.
Both the main enclosures are relatively large (but see “Concerns”, below) each with a pond, soft substrates, vegetation and large areas to explore. There are also holding enclosures with their own pools.
Having two enclosures enables the facility to replicate the solitary existence of wild polar bears. In particular, female polar bears lead a solitary existence except during breeding and when with cubs. The female bear, Victoria, has the exclusive use of one of the two main enclosures.
- Captive breeding programme
- The area available for the bears exceeds the Manitoba Standard but, we believe, falls short of our own recommendation for polar bear sanctuaries of at least 8,000 square metres (2 acres) per animal.
We do not yet have details of the feeding, exercise, medical and enrichment regimes at the Highland Wildlife Park.
To celebrate International Polar Bear Day the Park published the video below of two-year-old Hamish and his mother Victoria. In November 2020 Hamish was transferred to the Yorkshire Wildlife Park.