Chipmunks sitting on a ‘sock mountain’ as hundreds are donated to keep them warm

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A wildlife park that appealed for members of the public to donate old socks to keep their chipmunks warm seems to have slightly underestimated Brits’ generosity when it comes to animals.

Following an appeal on Facebook for “chipmunk worthy socks” to help keep the cute and cuddly rodents at Longleat Safari Park warm over Christmas hundreds of pairs have poured in.

Longleat’s Alexa Maultby explained why the park has asked for socks in the first place: ”The chipmunks use one sock for a bed and one sock to keep all their food in so we need a constant supply of fresh socks as they nibble holes in them.”

“But we weren’t quite prepared for the huge number of socks the public have provided us with.”

Keepers now have more socks than they know what do with

Longleat keeper Darren Beasley said: “As well as great places to snuggle up inside the chipmunks also use the socks as places to store their food.

“It may be a bit early to be starting to think about Christmas but we’re hoping people will be happy to find an alternative role for all those odd and unworn socks cluttering up their drawers.

The Christmas appeal for “fresh, clean” old socks – in any size, shape or colour – went out on Facebook last month.

“It’s difficult to think of many other uses for odd socks and donating them to our chipmunks would definitely mean they were going to a good home,”

The chipmunks use the socks as sleeping bags

The response was huge, with socks being sent to Longleat from as far afield as New Zealand.

The appeal specifically said “the more the merrier”, but keepers have been overwhelmed with “literally hundreds of socks”.

Alexa said: “There’s now a sock mountain and we’re looking for other uses for them.”

Some packages arrived from the other side of the world

She said that keepers are now planning to use some of the woolly windfall as bedding for some of the park’s other animals.

“We’d like to thank everyone who has made the effort to donate,” she said.

“But we definitely have more than enough now so we’d kindly request no more are sent in.”





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