Tiger cub named after Blackpool’s Blue Peter star Barney

Blackpool Zoo's three-month-old tiger cubs, Radzi, left, and Barney - named after the Blue Peter presenters. Barney Harwood is from Blackpool.

Blackpool Zoo's three-month-old tiger cubs, Radzi, left, and Barney - named after the Blue Peter presenters. Barney Harwood is from Blackpool.

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Blackpool Zoo has announced its new tiger cub twins have been named after Blue Peter presenters, Blackpool’s own Barney Harwood and his colleague Radzi Chinyanganya.

The three-month-old stripy duo’s names have even been matched to their on-screen counterpart’s personalities.

Barney’s namesake, according to keepers, is a cheeky chappy who is playful, bossy and mischievous while the feline Radzi is quieter and a more chilled-out character who is described by keepers as a mummy’s boy.

Earlier this summer, Radzi visited the zoo with an indestructible football which the cubs’ mum Alyona put to the test - and he took a shine to the mum-to-be.

Roger Shillabeer, who is responsible for looking after the two new tiger cubs, said: “It has been more than 18 years since we have heard the pitter patter of tiny stripy feet here at Blackpool Zoo, so we were delighted when mother, Alyona, gave birth to healthy twins.

“They are our little superstars so we wanted to give them names to reflect this.

“Generation after generation have grown up watching Blue Peter and it is the most celebrated children’s TV programme in the world, so naming the cubs after two of its current presenters not only recognises this but will act as a reminder of the year that the cubs were born.

“Barney and Radzi are doing fantastically well, and are now enjoying the outside paddock with mum and dad. The cubs will play a vital part in the species’ breeding programme, we are looking forward to watching them thrive.”

The cubs were born during the night on June 11th to mum Alyona and dad Zambar. Alyona joined Zambar in 2012 from Safaripark Beekse Bergen in the Netherlands. Zambar has been at Blackpool Zoo since 2010 and was born and hand-reared at Marwell Zoo after being rejected by his mother.