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Plastics may not tame the beasts, but they tackle the environment at zoo

By: PRW

June 13, 2014

Visitors to England’s Chester Zoo will be reading about the animals on signage using recycled plastics in place of plywood.

The maintenance team at the zoo in Upton-By-Chester have opted to use Stokbord made by Centriforce Products Ltd. of Liverpool, England, from recycled film and bottles using high density polyethylene and low density PE, for the backing on its signs throughout animal enclosures.

“Stokbord is a much more sustainable solution for us than plywood,” said the zoo’s maintenance foreman Tony Ankers in a news release. “It’s an incredibly versatile material, so it is ideal for the wide variety of uses around the zoo from bird boxes to frog houses, from rodent enclosures to creating signs of all shapes and sizes.”

Stokbord has similar characteristics to timber. It can be routed, sawed, drilled and screwed into, he explained. Laminated signs are attached to the Stokbord backing.

“When plywood is routed, it exposes the end grain making it even more susceptible to rotting,” Ankers continued. “This can be a problem as many of our environments are wet, humid or steamy and animal structures need to be washed down regularly. Outdoors signs also need to withstand weather extremes.

“Plywood may require replacing in as little as six months and needs to be regularly inspected and maintained. By contrast we know that Stokbord will last for years without degrading.”