Curraghs Wildlife Park visitors have helped to raise more than £10,000 for its conservation fund this year, despite the park being closed for 10 weeks due to COVID-19 restrictions.
The voluntary donations will boost conservation efforts on the Isle of Man, and help efforts to protect some of the park’s favourite animals in the wild.
Manager, Kathleen Graham, said:
‘We must thank our visitors and members for their generosity.
‘Species across the world are being lost at an alarming rate and the projects we support locally and further afield make a real difference. Just by visiting the park or joining as members, and not opting out of the donation, people are helping valuable conservation efforts.’
Globally zoos are the third largest funder of conservation efforts in the wild, but it has been a difficult year, with most suffering from the impact of the global health emergency.
The £10,000 will support a number of projects on the Isle of Man through the Manx Wildlife Trust including its Manx Shearwater project. It will also help projects that support gibbons, penguins, red pandas and lemurs in the wild.
All four of the species have recorded births at the park in the last year as part of British and European accredited breeding programmes.
Geoffrey Boot MHK, Minister for Environment, Food and Agriculture, said:
‘The Curraghs Wildlife Park was one of the first to reopen in the British Isles after lockdown. This was thanks to the hard work and determination of the people on our Island.
‘To raise this amount is a remarkable achievement in such a challenging year – especially as so many zoos in the UK continue to struggle. I’m confident the funds will give a much needed boost to the projects it supports.’
The Park is open seven days a week until 2 November when it will move to its winter opening schedule.