Prague Zoo increases endangered species support

The zoo has been a pioneer is projects to save particular species and habitats

The new City Hall administration has announced increased support for endangered species.

Prague has been involved in an international support system for projects to rescue endangered species in the wild for more than a decade through the Prague Zoo. So far, the Prague Zoo donated Kč 2 from each paid admission fee for these projects. This year, it will increase to Kč 3 per admission, as approved by the City Council in one of its first actions.

This year's zoo has had over 1,400,000 entries, so the contribution to endangered species will be more than Kč 4 million.

“In-situ projects to help endangered wildlife and support for endangered species is the basic principle on which zoos today operate. The Prague Zoo has already gained an international reputation and prestige, and the capital, of course, is very supportive of it,” Prague Deputy Mayor Petr Hlubuček (STAN) said on the City Hall website.

The Prague Zoo is a pioneer in in-situ projects, and the model has spread for example to zoos in Germany. One of the most important projects at Prague Zoo is the award-winning “Return of Wild Horses,” which has been restoring the wild Przewalski's horse to a protected park in Mongolia, the ancestral home of the rare breed.

The zoo also recently announced financial support for a project on the island of Borneo to protect among other things, a population of about 2,000 proboscis monkeys, known in the Czech Republic as Borneo beer drinkers.

The project is not just about saving the proboscis monkeys, but also about 450 square kilometers of rainforest and coastline threatened by palm oil plantations and expanding industry. The local coastal mangroves and forests are home to many other endangered animals, including orangutans and sun bears.

Prague Zoo last year was named the fifth-best zoo in the world by travel website TripAdvisor. The ranking is based on visitor reviews. The zoo took fourth place in 2015 and seventh place in 2014; no ranking was published in 2016.

Last year saw the birth of 1,261 youngsters of 219 species of mammals, birds and reptiles.

The zoo has had more than 60 million visitors since it opened on Sept. 28, 1931.

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