What is the best time of day to come to the zoo?
If you can, it is better to arrive in the morning when the zoo opens. You’ll be able to make the most of the surroundings, but also of the animals, who are usually more active in the morning. It takes about two hours to go round the zoo (without watching the attractions or spending time at the children’s playground).
Is the zoo accessible for wheelchairs and pushchairs?
The zoo is easy to access with pushchair. We have several pushchairs to hire, for a 4€ day fee. An identity card would be asked as a guarantee. It is preferable for persons in wheelchairs to be accompanied. Please note that we have wheelchairs for free loan (availables at the tickets desk).
Can we can stay overnight in the car park with a camper van?
Yes, you can spend the night here in your camper van. It is better to use the second car park (the one reserved for cars), where you will not be disturbed by noise from the road. The best place is on the grass up at the top of the car park.
Can we feed the animals?
All our animals have their own special diet designed to be the best for their species. If you give them anything else to eat it may make them ill, so you are not allowed to feed the animals, except the fish in the streams (pellets provided) and the animals in the mini farm (plain pop-corn on sale from the ticket office).
Why does the zoo seem to close so early?
The ticket office closes 2 hours before the zoo closes, that is at 4.30 in the low season and 5.30 in the high season. Why? Because every evening all our animals are taken inside. This means that our staff have to start their “rounds" as soon as the ticket office closes, in order to have time to see to the animals. We would like to thank you in advance for your understanding over this.
How can I become a zookeeper?
Here is some advice in English about becoming a zookeeper:https://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk/advice/planning/jobprofiles/Pages/zookeeper.aspx http://www.careers-guide.com/job-choices/zookeeper.htm
Details about colleges in France that train zookeepers:Training Centre de Formation Professionnelle et de Promotion Agricoles Areines BP 106 - 41106 VENDÔME CEDEX - Tel.: +33 (0)254 776 937 Requirement: have at least a baccalaureate school leaver’s diploma – Agricultural diploma (biology or animal field) or baccalaureate level - Agricultural diploma (biology or animal field), plus a year’s practical experience in the field. INSTITUT RURAL La Charmelière 44470 CARQUEFOU - Tel. +33 (0)240 527 982 Requirement: have at least a Vocational certificate (CAP, BEP), or equivalent level. Centre de Formation d'Apprentis Agricoles Avenue de la Garenne - 46500 GRAMAT - Tel. +33 (0)5 65 38 72 12 Most zoos in France recruit through the above training centers.
Are picnics allowed in the zoo?
Picnics are allowed inside the zoo. There are several picnic shelters with seating for approximately 250 people. You can go in and out of the zoo as often as you like on the day of your visit, as long as you go to the ticket office and put a stamp on your hand before leaving.
Do you accept French “holiday vouchers”?
Yes, you can use holiday vouchers (“chèques vacances”) at all the sales outlets in the zoo (ticket office, shop, restaurant and sandwich bar). We cannot give change back on them, so you will have to give the exact amount or pay the difference in cash, by bank card, or by a cheque drawn on a French bank.
Are dogs allowed in the zoo?
No, we’re afraid that dogs and other pets are not allowed in the zoo. This is for health reasons, and above all for safety, as they may frighten some of the wild animals here.
How do we get to the zoo? What is the exact address and which GPS coordinates should we enter into our Sat Nav?
Parc Zoologique de Champrépus, 493 rue Saint-Gaud, 50800 Champrépus GPS coordinates: 48.834, -1.326 The zoo is on the D924, on the road between Villedieu-les-Poêles (8km km/5 miles) and Granville (25km/15½ miles). On the A84 motorway, take exit n° 37, then follow signs to Granville.
Is the zoo closed in winter, and what happens to the animals?
Yes, the zoo is closed in November, December and January (it opens again for the February half-term holiday). This is when we work on repairing or modifying some of the enclosures. As for the animals, they are pampered while the zoo is closed, and they all stay here! Even those who feel the cold the most venture out when the weather permits.
Who created Champrépus Zoo?
The zoo was born out of the passion of Lucien Lebreton (the grandfather of Yves and Jacques Lebreton, the current owners). It first opened to the public on 10 July 1957, starting with local animals. But the collection grew, with the zoo eventually becoming the main “animal clinic” in the Manche department. In the 1980s, Yves and Jacques Lebreton, inspired by the same passion, transformed the areas where the animals lived, adapting them so that each species had ideal living conditions. The zoo gradually took shape as you see it today: organised around a set of values: a consistent conservation plan, improved living conditions for the animals, landscaping, new teaching materials and activities, services for visitors, … The zoo as a whole develops day by day, with the same aim as when we set out: to put over a positive message based on the thrill of the meeting between man and animals, making the experience as pleasurable as possible for all involved (animals, staff and visitors).
Where are the animals from?
No money is involved when animals are exchanged, and this has been true for several years. Zoos either exchange animals or loan animals to other zoos. That is why most of our (wild) animals come from other zoos or were born here.