Following reports in December that Tayto Park was attempting to prevent information being released from Department of Culture of its animal mortality rates, the zoo has issued a statement.
Tayto Park says that although in 2016, 30 animals passed away at Tayto Park, from a total animal population of 377, this mortality rate of 7.9% "was not related to any shortcomings in the care and husbandry that we provided."
Their zoo was banned from adding more animals in 2012 after inspectors said animals showed "high levels of aggression and stress" but this ban was lifted
Tayto Park continued to say that: "Unfortunately, death is inevitable, for creatures great and small and despite our best efforts, so it was at Tayto Park. The animals that died were Chickens, Rabbits, Pheasants, Sheep, Pygmy Goats, Partridges, a Goose, a Hawk, a Meerkat and our three very old pot-bellied Pigs Toot, Puddle and Pumbaa.
"Our beloved male Bald Eagle Arnold battled myositis with the best of care but very sadly he passed away. An infection saw us lose two of our much loved Goeldis and Tamarin, but the round the clock care of our dedicated team of keepers and vets meant that we saved the remaining group.
They added that they look forward to maintaining our high standards in 2018 and continuing to contribute to the care and conservation of the animal population both here and internationally.