The Story of Five Sisters Zoo
Five Sisters Zoo’s mission is to encourage the conservation of endangered wildlife for both native and non-native species, and create a safe and natural environment for all animals in our collection.
The zoo owners, Brian and Shirley Curran (pictured above), started out running a garden centre called The Five Sisters named after the five shale bings that overlook the site. Shirley and Brian are both passionate about animals, and during the time of the garden centre were always agreeing to re-home pets that were either no longer wanted or could no longer be cared for. When visiting the garden centre many families enjoyed seeing the various animals, and as the animal collection grew the zoo was born!
The Five Sisters Zoo was officially established in 2005 with just a small collection of rabbits, guinea pigs, goats, and pigs. Since then the zoo has grown into an exciting collection of over 198 different species of mammals, birds and reptiles from all around the world. We are now BIAZA and Balai accredited, for which we have to maintain very high standards of animal care and welfare. Five Sisters Zoo is the most-visited wildlife attraction in West Lothian!
A large part of our focus has been to offer three bears and four lions a new home following lives performing in travelling circuses. More recently we rescued our two new bears Henk and Eso from a roadside restaurant in Albania, and you can read more about their story here.
There have been lows as well as highs, most notably the devastating fire in April of 2013. We again have to thank all of you for your incredible support and for helping us get back up and running at this difficult time. You can find out more about the fire here.
The zoo is run by Brian and Shirley and their family, with the help of a dedicated team of zoo keepers, grounds keepers and ticket desk and cafe staff. We also hugely appreciate all the help we get from our large team of volunteers, some of whom have been with us for many years. As a non-profit making organisation, any money is injected back into the zoo to help with the animals upkeep, veterinary bills, and enclosure maintenance.
If you would like to learn more about the story of the zoo, our new book “Five Sisters Zoo: Our Story” is on sale at our gift shop or you can order it from our online shop here.