Chester Zoo has confirmed that the money pledged by well-wishers after a "devastating" fire over the weekend will be spent on conservation.

Although mammals and larger birds were saved from the blaze, "heartbroken" staff confirmed that a number of frogs, fish, insects and small birds died.

The zoo described it as "one of the toughest days in our long history".

Thousands of people have donated to support the zoo. Credit: JustGiving

All the incredible supporters who've given are providing us with a fund which will help us continue with our mission to prevent extinction. Thank you so much for your kindness. Our teams have been working around the clock and knowing how much support there is behind them has made this awful time a little easier to bear.

Chester Zoo