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Don't throw away your Halloween pumpkins

One of Longleat's new colobus monkeys gets acquainted with a Halloween pumpkin. Credit: Longleat

Now Halloween is over, what do you do with your finely carved pumpkins? Well you can eat them of course - like the newest arrivals at Longleat.

The seven-strong colony of colobus monkeys have taken over the island at the Wiltshire Safari Park, which was previously occupied by Nico the gorilla, who sadly passed away earlier this year.

The primates are originally from East Africa and have a diet of fruit, berries, leaves and seeds. They happily tucked into the pumpkins, specially carved with Halloween faces by one of the keepers.

We knew they liked squashes and gourds and thought pumpkins would make the perfect autumnal housewarming gift.

One of the team carved them into appropriately-spooky looking Halloween faces but it didn’t deter the monkeys who actually seemed to be even more interested in them and finding out what was inside.

– Georgina Barnes, Keeper

Watch the colobus monkeys enjoying their Halloween treat:

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The colobus monkeys make short work of their pumpkin gifts. Credit: Longleat

Over the past few weeks, families have been busy carving their own pumpkin creations to celebrate All Hallow's Eve.

All those creations certainly produced a LOT of mush - which was perfectly edible.The campaign group Hubbub claims 18,000 tonnes of edible pumpkin ends up in the bin each year. That's the same weight as 1,500 double decker buses. It runs Pumpkin Rescue every year to teach people about alternatives.

18,000
tonnes of edible pumpkin goes to waste every year

Don't let your pumpkin end up in landfill!

There are lots of options but don't forget to remove any candles or decorations first.

  • The flesh can be used in lots of recipes - just Google pumpkin recipes
  • You can plant the seeds ready for next year's crop
  • Local farms or wildlife centres may want your pumpkins to feed animals and birds
  • Cut your pumpkin open and leave it out for the birds in your garden
  • Chop it up and add it to your compost bin
  • Leave it at the end of the garden for wildlife to enjoy
  • Recycle it via your food waste bin but do check first if your local authority turns it into compost like Somerset Waste Partnership
It's not just monkeys who would find pumpkins a treat Credit: Longleat