Since the start of winter, I have been one of Paradise Wildlife Park's blog ambassadors. The zoo based in Hertfordshire has a long history of doing incredible conservation work over the past three decades and I was delighted to hear the news that they have this year secured charity status! They will be celebrating the launch of the Zoological Society of Hertfordshire (ZSH) on April 1st with the opening of a new state-of- the-art ‘Penguin Falls’ enclosure for critically endangered African Penguins.
Paradise Wildlife Park in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, has announced the launch of the Zoological Society of Hertfordshire, a registered charity (No.1108609) which, incorporating the Paradise Wildlife Park brand, will allow the organisation to focus its operations on education and animal conservation.
Paradise Wildlife Park was formed in 1982 and is already well known for its animal breeding and conservation work. To date, the Park has made contributions of over £5,000,000 to conservation projects and wildlife causes in the UK and around the world. It is also part of the European Endangered Species Breeding Programme, with successful African Penguin, Lar Gibbon, Cotton Top Tamarin, Silvery Marmoset and Red Ruff Lemur births in the past year alone.
Paradise was also the first zoo in Europe to receive a double Platinum Award for funds raised for the EAZA Tiger Conservation Initiative and is a Platinum Award winner for funds raised for the Lemur and Madagascan EAZA appeal. It is an active member of the British, European and World Association of Zoos (BIAZA, EAZA & WAZA).
Voted Hertfordshire’s Top Tourist Attraction and with a Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence, the new ZSH charity will continue to utilise the Paradise Wildlife Park brand in order to raise funds for its work and to act as a focus for an expanded wildlife education programme for visitors. Home to over 400 exotic wild animals, including big cats (Paradise is the only zoo in the UK with all 5 Big Cats; Tigers, White Lions, Jaguars, Snow Leopards and a White Tiger), Monkeys (we have the largest collection of small monkeys in the UK), Zebras, Lemurs, Meerkats, Red Pandas, Tapirs, Penguins, Wallabies, Emus, Birds of Prey, Reptiles (including the UK’s largest Anaconda) and many more.
ZSH Managing Director, Lynn Whitnall, said; “As a zoo we’re crucially aware that our purpose will always be questioned. However, at Paradise Wildlife Park, we’ve always made the wellbeing of our animals and the preservation of the wider natural world our prime focus. The creation of ZSH will help us to continue and, we hope, expand our conservation and educational work, making clear the valuable role zoos can play in protecting the lasting freedom of species throughout the world.”
The official launch of the Zoological Society of Hertfordshire (ZSH) will be at 12pm on Saturday 1st April 2017. And, to help celebrate, they will launch a new state-of- the-art ‘Penguin Falls’ enclosure for critically endangered African Penguins. Based on their homeland in the South of Africa, the Penguins' amazing new habitat will provide much needed space for an excellent quality of life and breeding – Paradise Wildlife Park is one of only two zoos in the UK to be recommended for African Penguin breeding.
I haven't been able to commit to attending the launch as it is so close to my due date, but I am really excited for future of the zoo and as soon as I am settled with the new baby, I will be taking her and the boys for another visit!