It’s an important part of what modern zoos do.
As well as the conservation work we do through our breeding programmes, we partner with several conservation organisations and charities to help the wild cousins of our animals.
It’s not just about raising money, although we do that too. It’s about raising awareness amongst you, our half a million visitors, about the threats facing animals and what you can do to help. Here’s some of the people we’re doing great things with.
Wildlife Vets International (WVI)
We’re supporting WVI’s Amur leopard reintroduction project. There are fewer than 35 Amur leopards left in the steppes, or grasslands, of Russia. The biggest threats they face are poaching, habitat destruction and infectious diseases transmitted from domestic animals, such as dogs.
The money we’ve raised has funded air travel for zoo vets and bought vital equipment to health check the wild population.
Barbary Macaque Awareness and Conservation (BMAC)
We’ve been supporting BMAC’s work in Morocco for a number of years. The Barbary macaque, which you can see at Folly Farm, is at risk of extinction in the wild. The biggest threat facing them is being illegally taken from the wild for the exotic pet trade.
All of our macaques were illegally taken from the wild and kept as pets before joining us as part of a rehoming project from a sanctuary in the Netherlands. Sian Waters is the volunteer executive director for BMAC and she’s from South Wales. Sian and her team carry out vital work with children in Morocco to raise awareness of the importance of protecting the macaque and not accepting money to steal them.
We help fund the ‘Monkey Bus’ which goes around schools and communities to spread the conservation message and a football tournament which brings children together to celebrate the macaque as an iconic native species.
The football tournament in Morocco which raises awareness of the plight of macaques.
Neptune’s Army of Rubbish Cleaners (NARC)
We’re helping NARC conserve the marine wildlife off our very own coast here in Pembrokeshire. NARC’s volunteer divers have undertaken over 100 underwater clean up’s collecting marine litter. They’ve pulled up everything from fishing tackle, lost lobster pots, car batteries, bikes and even the kitchen sink! We help fund some of NARC’s dives and we also welcome them on park as part of our World Penguin Day event to raise awareness and additional funds.
NARC lends a helping hand at our World Penguin Day event.
Bongo Surveillance Project (BSP)
Founded in 2004 the Bongo Surveillance Project (BSP) is a recognised World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) conservation project. The Mountain or Eastern Bongo is critically endangered and this organisation is the only one in Kenya specifically monitoring them in the wild. Bongo surveillance requires specialist knowledge and equipment and the BSP use GPS and camera traps for the monitoring of Bongo habitats.
World Land Trust (WLT)
The World Land Trust (WLT) is an international conservation charity that takes direct action to save rainforest and other wildlife habitats. They were founded in 1989 and through their work nearly half a million acres of rainforest and other threatened habitat have been saved with a further 2.5 million acres now under protection agreements. The WLT depends on public donations.
Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF)
The Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF) raise awareness and secure a future for giraffe and conserve their natural habitats. They do this by identifying key threats to giraffe populations in Africa and try to develop ways to lessen these. Another vital part of what they do is to work with local, national and international partners on conservation efforts and raise vital funds in the process.
Save the Rhino
Save the Rhino is a large organisation who work with partners to support endangered rhinos in Africa and Asia. Their aim is to protect and increase rhino numbers and population distribution. One of the ways in which they help is by ensuring that local communities in key rhino areas benefit from employment, education, outreach and the sustainable use of natural resources to try and reduce the demand for rhino horn.