We join the keepers at Sydney’s Taronga zoo as they nurture and train their newest arrivals, including Maiya the red panda and Kamini the pygmy hippo. A photo-essay by Jonny Weeks

Lily and Blossom are about to be toilet trained at Taronga zoo. The two young sugar gliders are curled up together inside a wooden box within a staff bathroom while trainer Suzie Lemon is trying to coax them out with the promise of a sugary, sap-like treat. Lily eventually emerges and promptly pees all over the floor but Lemon doesn’t seem to mind. After all, they’re not here for that kind of toilet training.

“We’re training them to glide over to us on cue to demonstrate their natural gliding behaviour,” Lemon explains. “We needed an enclosed space, somewhere with four solid walls, because in future they’re going to be doing this for education purposes in the new learning centre.

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