YORKSHIRE Wildlife Park is celebrating after record numbers of visitors made their way through its gates this summer.
More than 500,000 visitors have now entered the award-winning park in Doncaster since it opened in April 2009.
Last month 83,000 visited the attraction, almost 50 per cent up on last year, and more than the whole of 2009.
It means more visitors came in August than in the whole of the first year the park was open.
Now managers at the venue say it is set to see record numbers over the year.
“It’s a real compliment to everyone’s hard work,” said attraction director Cheryl Williams.
“We opened the park to create fun-filled family days out with conservation at the heart of what we do, so to see so many people enjoying what we’ve created is truly fantastic.
“We are so grateful for all the continuing support of the local community and we are glad the record number of visitors are now helping boost the local economy and beyond.
It is also great to see people coming from further afield.”
Families visiting Yorkshire Wildlife Park can enjoy a spectacular Land of the Tigers, home to endangered Amur tigers, as well as a pride of lions.
Work is currently ongoing on building an enclosure for leopards at the site in Branton.
Bosses are looking at breeding tigers and leopards at the attraction, as part of a European conservation programme for endangered species.
Other animals at the site include lemurs, African painted dogs, and zebras.
There are also squirrel monkeys at the recently opened South America Viva section, wallabies the Wallaby Walkabout enclosure, and a group of meercats.