Issuu on Google+

Proceedings of the 64th Annual Conference

Zoos and Aquariums:

St Louis 4–8 October 2009

W AZ Pr A T es ec en hn ta ica tio l C ns on on gr ly es s

Global Challenges, Opportunities and Strategies


Table of Contents Welcoming address by the Host................................... 1 Buenos dias! Bonjour! Guten Morgen! Bom dia! Bon giorno! Good Morning!........................... 2 Welcome Address by the WAZA President................... 3 Statement delivered on behalf of Mr Ahmed Djoghlaf, The Executive Secretary of The Convention on Biological Diversity..................... 4 WAZA Congress Abstracts............................................ 7

Imprint Editor: Gerald Dick, WAZA Executive Office IUCN Conservation Centre Rue Mauverney 28 CH-1196 Gland Switzerland phone: +41 22 999 07 90 (WAZA Secretariat)

Received Full WAZA Congress Contributions The Strategic Importance of Flagship Species and Habitats.............................................................. 16 New Challenges for ICOM – International Council of Museums.............................. 18 Dealing with the Media: Getting the Message Out..... 20 Amazon and beyond Exhibit at Miami Metro Zoo....... 25

Layout &Typesetting: michal@sky.cz Cover photo: Jeffersen National Expansion Memorial, St Louis, © Gerald Dick Edition: © WAZA 2010 In order to make wise use of natural resources, it has been decided to offer the proceedings of WAZA Conferences in future online only. This saves paper resources and expensive postage costs, thus CO2 emissions. WAZA thanks for your understanding.

New Research Insights for Conservation, Awareness, and Action............................................... 27 Multi-Lingual Information: An Added Value for Zoos?........................................... 30 They’re Calling on You: Using Conservation Education to bring about Behaviour Change.............. 32 21st Century Zoological Organizations & Field Conservation: Considering the Parameters for Conservation Partnerships.................................... 40 Building Capacity for Conservation in Bukit Tigapuluh, Sumatra....................................... 42 The Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute.....................46

www.waza.org (members’ area). International Elephant Foundation: Conservation of elephants around the world..............48 Grevy’s Zebra Trust: Conservation of Grevy’s zebra in Kenya and Ethiopia....................... 51 Report on the Economic and Social Contribution of the Zoological Industry in Australia ................................................................ 53 Climate change and biodiversity Our engagement challenge ....................................... 56 A Changing World Threatens the Future for Cranes..... 58 Sustaining the Ark – The Need for Global Species Management...................................... 62

ISSN: 2073-6576


1

October 2009 | St Louis

Welcoming address by the Host Jeffrey Bonner, Saint Louis Zoo

As a prelude to welcoming you here today, I’d like to introduce some of the Saint Louis Zoo’s most distinguished alumni – one of the world’s eminent conservationists, Dr. William Conway, and the man who is responsible for my involvement in WAZA, Director Emeritus of the Saint Louis Zoo, Charlie Hoessle. I am so proud to be able to welcome you here today. I’m proud that you would travel great distances to attend the 64th annual conference of WAZA. I’m proud to show you the Saint Louis Zoo, plus the great city of St. Louis, which I hope you will enjoy. I guess I’m especially proud of the way zoos and aquariums have evolved through the years to become centers of global conservation and environmental education. Through our living collections, we are contributing to conservation research. Through our broad collaboration, we can conduct meaningful, worldwide information campaigns, such as the Year of the Gorilla, Year of the Frog and Year of Biodiversity

I’m proud of the financial and technical support that zoos have dedicated to international habitat conservation and sustainability. And we continue to share our knowledge of vital issues, like the many to be discussed this week.

Our participation in WAZA goes back through time, as well. Saint  Louis Zoo Director Marlin Perkins was a member of IUDZG, as was Richard D. Schultz. Then in 1982, Charlie Hoessle became active in IUDZG and subsequently WAZA.

Next year the Saint Louis Zoo will celebrate its centennial. Our first Zoological Society of St. Louis was formed in 1910. Then in 1916, the citizens of St. Louis voted to tax themselves for the construction of a zoo. It is said that this was the first zoo in the world which the citizens of a community supported by passing a mill tax. Since then we have been fortunate to continue to enjoy the great support of the St. Louis community.

The Saint Louis Zoo looks forward to our next 100 years. We will work with the members of WAZA to seek new opportunities for biodiversity conservation. We want to continue to be a worthy contributor in meeting the new challenges that we all face together.


2

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Buenos dias! Bonjour! Guten Morgen! Bom dia! Bon giorno! Good Morning! Kris Vehrs on behalf of Jim Maddy, AZA

It is my pleasure to welcome you on behalf of the regional association – the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. I very much look forward to the high quality speakers joining us for our technical sessions. It’s always particularly effective that we have so many leaders from the zoo and aquarium. It is exciting that we will be hearing from the leadership of the Convention on Biological Diversity; the IUCN -- about the Species Survival Commission as well as the Red List, Conservation International, and Fauna and Flora International just to name a few. I also look forward to the opportunities we have over the next days to continue our work together. One of the most important topics we will be discussing is the Sustainability of our Populations. I learned during the CBSG meeting this past weekend that all of us are in the process of assessing the effectiveness of “intensely managed programs”. Intensely managed programs is our new way of describing ex situ programs. Even the use of the term ex situ and in situ creates a chasm between the two. It’s better to discuss our programs in a continuum – intensely managed and less intensely managed. Back to the sustainably of our populations -- we’ve only just begun to brainstorm this issue and I know this will continue to be a topic of discussion in the formal meetings and out in the hallways and other venues.

A piece of our discussions on sustainability of our populations will be the Global Species Management Programs. There’s never been a greater need for us to work together globally than right now. At present there are only three Global Species management Programs and there is a need for many, many more. AZA and the regional associations are working together in a very strong way. We are building relationships with each other and also with WAZA. The leadership of the Regional Associations has been meeting for several years as an ad hoc drafting group for the WAZA Council. As the meetings of the Council were often in Berne, we called ourselves the “Berned‑Out” drafting group. Council would be meeting in one room while, our group would be in the room next door. At the Al Ain Mid‑year meeting of the WAZA Council this past March, several Regional Associations were asked to make presentations on their strategic plans. Specifically, we were asked how our strategic plans complement and integrate with those strategic plans of WAZA or in some cases how the strategic plans of the regional associations may compete or conflict with WAZA’s plans.

Yesterday, for the very first time, the regional associations were invited to participate in the WAZA Council meetings as observers. I know that this was beneficial to the regional associations. It will enable us to go back to our membership fully informed about WAZA initiatives and enable us to educate our respective memberships about them. I’m hopeful that the discussions were useful to the WAZA Council as well. On Tuesday, there will be a meeting of the Associations. We are reinvigorating this Committee and have a full agenda of important topics to discussion. All representatives from Associations are encouraged to attend. I want to extend my thanks on behalf of all attendees to Dr. Jeffrey Bonner and the talented staff of the St. Louis Zoo for hosting this great conference. When I look out in the audience and see all the great partners in global conservation I have hope that we can and we will work together to save wildlife and wild places. I wish everyone a productive week.


3

October 2009 | St Louis

Welcome Address by the WAZA President Gordon McGregor Reid, Chester Zoo

Dear Colleagues, I give you a very warm welcome to Saint Louis in America’s Midwest on this the occasion of our 64th Annual WAZA Conference. What a wonderful setting! We are most grateful to the Saint Louis Zoo and its governing Board, staff and volunteers for working in close partnership with our own WAZA team, led by Dr Gerald Dick, to plan and deliver this conference. In particular, we are grateful to the Saint Louis Zoo Chief Executive (and WAZA Council Member) Dr Jeffrey Bonner and his charming wife Melody Noel for acting as hosts. We know that they have lots of special events lined up for delegates and partners and we very much look forward to these. This includes visiting the world class Saint Louis Zoo, which is currently celebrating 100 years since its foundation and has this year published Animals Always by Mary Delach Leonard. This is an impressive, commemorative historical volume – to be generously presented to each delegate as a gift. In this regard, we should pay our respects to Charlie Hoessle for his leadership and commitment to the Saint Louis as Zoo Director from 1982 to 2002 and for his continuing supporting role.

I should also introduce and thank Jeff’s core organising team, in particular of Dr Eric Miller, Kelly Fesler, Janet Powell, Christy Childs, Ali Wieser, Nadia Hurley, Gretchyn Wright, Lauren Kistner and the incomparable Jennifer Poindexter. I must also recognise and thank Gerald Dick and his WAZA executive team of Natasha Jackson, Ulrike Fox, Thomas Althaus and Sylvia Geyser. Having now taken over fully as Chief Executive, Gerald has much important and exciting progress to report on. This notably includes launching the new WAZA Corporate Strategy to guide us forward over the next few years and a Memorandum of Under‑ standing between WAZA and the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) to be formally signed in a ceremony at this meeting. This year I step down as WAZA President and will be passing on the mantle to our distinguished colleague and Vice President Dr Mark Penning whom I know will serve WAZA well. Mark, Gerald and I have been working closely with the Aquarium Committee and other partners to produce the WAZA publication Turning the Tide: A Global Aquarium Strategy for Conservation and Sustainability. Mark will be introducing and launching the Aquarium Strategy during the course of this meeting.

Several institutional partners who have kindly endorsed this Strategy (IUCN-Species Survival Commission, Ramsar Convention, Wetlands International and Conservation International) are represented here today by senior executives and they will be delivering talks in line with the conference theme in conservation and sustainability: Global Challenges, Opportunities and Strategies. We thank them for their participation and contributions and I will now move forward to introduce them as speakers for the first plenary session. Thank you!


4

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Statement delivered on behalf of Mr Ahmed Djoghlaf, The Executive Secretary of The Convention on Biological Diversity David Ainsworth, Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity

Ladies and Gentlemen, Human beings are becoming increasingly cut off from nature. More than 50 per cent of the world’s population currently lives in cities, and 70 per cent will by 2030. As a result, the majority of the population does not appreciate that biodiversity is their ultimate source for goods like food, lumber and medicines, and provides society with irreplaceable services like crop pollination, air and water purification, erosion control and the renewal of soil fertility. This estrangement from nature makes it difficult for people to see the dangers inherent in the ongoing loss of biodiversity. Human activities are currently driving species extinct at up to 1,000 times the natural background rate. In the long‑term, this loss will radically undermine attempts at sustainable development, exacerbating poverty and fostering conflicts over dwindling resources. To prevent worst‑case scenarios, we need to forge a global partnership of governments, institutions and concerned citizens, a coalition that will educate people about the value of biodiversity and motivate them to preserve our biological heritage. The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is the premier international treaty devoted to the preservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, and it has long been engaged in this task. In 2002, Parties to the CBD set a target to significantly slow biodiversity loss worldwide by 2010 as

a contribution to poverty alleviation and to the benefit of all life on Earth. The 2010 Target was endorsed by the Johannesburg World Summit on Sustainable Development and the United Nations General Assembly, and was incorporated as a new target under the UN Millennium Development Goals. Following declarations of support by meetings of G8 environment ministers, biodiversity loss was put on the agenda at the last three G8 Summits. To further emphasize the importance of biodiversity, the UN General Assembly has declared 2010 to be the International Year of Biodiversity and is convening a special session of heads of state in September 2010 on the topic. A turning point will occur in October of 2010, when representatives of the 192 member nations of the CBD will meet at its tenth Conference of the Parties (COP10) in Nagoya, Japan, to assess how close we have come to achieving the 2010 Biodiversity Target. In the coming months, Global Biodiversity Outlook 3, the flagship publication of the Convention on Biological Diversity will provide us with a first detailed, scientific assessment of our efforts to date. In the meantime it is fair to conclude that we will fall short of the mark: despite our initial start at tackling the problem, we still have a long way to go before the current extinction crisis will be resolved. The drivers of biodiversity loss are expected to increase. Habitat loss, nutrient loading, and climate change will have an increasing impact on all species, with dire consequences for humans. One of the mandates of COP10 in Nagoya will be to take our

successes and failures into account and formulate a comprehensive, post‑2010 strategy for slowing and ultimately stopping biodiversity loss in the years to come. Because of their expertise and abilities, the involvement of zoos and aquariums needs to be a part of this strategy. This is nowhere truer than in the preservation of individual species and the reduction of overall loss rates, one of the focal areas of the 2010 Target.

The 2008 Living Planet Index showed

that vertebrate population sizes have on average declined by almost 30% over the last 35 years, while the 2008 IUCN Red List revealed that 38 per cent of all examined species worldwide currently face a high risk of extinction. To help counter these trends, COP10 is likely to set quantitative, post‑2010 short‑ and long‑term biodiversity targets – possibly for 2020 and 2050 respectively – as well as push for the continued development of more detailed and comprehensive biodiversity indicators. The ultimate goal of these measures will be to strengthen our efforts on the ground, which is why the CBD wants to work more closely with zoos and aquariums to keep individual species from going extinct.


5

October 2009 | St Louis

One area where the assistance of zoos and aquariums will be invaluable is the coordination of in‑situ and ex‑situ conservation measures. Article 8 of the CBD calls for the development of protected areas as a primary in‑situ conservation tool, while Article 9 calls for complementary ex‑situ measures aimed at the recovery of threatened species and their reintroduction into natural habitats. Zoos and aquariums are repositories of genes and species that have been lost in the wild, a modern Noah’s Ark of life on Earth. As species continue to go extinct in the short‑ to mid‑term, there will be an increasingly pressing need to preserve biodiversity in zoos and aquariums and to draw on the expertise of these institutions for eventual possible reintroductions into the wild. The successful reintroduction of Prezwalski’s Horse (Equus ferus ssp. przewalskii) into Mongolia and the reinvigoration of Mauritius Kestrel (Falco punctatus) populations when the species was only four individuals away from extinction are only two classic examples of how captive‑breeding programs in zoos, when effectively coordinated with protective measures in the wild, can help re‑diversify life on the planet. Your work for ex situ and support to in situ conservation demonstrates that you understand these two efforts as a continuum. As previously mentioned, another main issue we face is a lack of awareness about the value of biodiversity. Zoos and aquariums are well‑placed to educate the public on this score. They are the main places where an increasingly urban population can come into contact with and learn about biodiversity – and not only exotic or distant flora and fauna, but also local species and ecosystems that are becoming just as unfamiliar to the average city dweller. Zoos and aquariums are also well‑positioned to mobilize public support for biodiversity‑friendly legislation. The CBD has been increasingly successful in generating political momentum at the international level, but the willpower to follow through on international commitments can only develop through public engagement at national and local levels. Zoos and aquariums, as the face of nature for so many people, can help motivate the public to act.

Another issue slowing our progress in tackling the biodiversity crisis is a lack of capacity in developing countries. Many of them simply do not have the knowhow or resources to be able to effectively implement biodiversity‑preservation policies and programs. To address this problem, the CBD actively strives to facilitate cooperation between developed and developing nations. Zoos and aquariums have a long history of just such work, assisting the efforts of conservation agencies in financially‑poor, biodiversity‑rich nations. Closer collaboration between the CBD and zoos and aquariums in this area will increase the effectiveness and reach of our efforts. The International Year of Biodiversity offers the opportunity for all those involved in the conservation of biodiversity to raise awareness. We have the opportunity to encourage people to DISCOVER the biodiversity that surrounds us, to REALISE its value, our connection to it and the consequences of its loss, and ACT to save it. Talking about biodiversity to the general public is both easy and also not so. Presented as a whole, it is a complex, scientific subject that encompasses everything and everyone. However, when presented in context and at a more intimate scale, biodiversity is an inspiring and exciting story – it is the story of life and the communities in which it is organized. If we want to motivate people around the world to take action to safeguard biodiversity, we need to help them discover the amazing connections between themselves and the world around them, and then realize the consequences of biodiversity loss as well as the huge benefits we will all share if we conserve and use it sustainably. The work that you do at zoos and aquariums that is the foundation for this.

The year will be a real challenge, and we need to get our communications just right in order to succeed. It is vital that our communications for the Year accomplish 4 things: • 1st | create excitement around the discovery that people are part of nature and intertwined with biodiversity. • 2nd | highlight the huge opportunity we are presented with, to safeguard biodiversity and create better lives for us all. • 3rd | create a strong sense of optimism that it’s not too late to act, and that together we can make a huge difference. • 4th | are honest about the urgency of the challenge. Now is the time for action. During the year, we have formulated a number of key messages that are designed to lay the foundations for your call to action. They aim to do this by following these objectives. Remove the perception that people are disconnected from biodiversity. Raise awareness of the threats of biodiversity loss and the benefits of safeguarding it. Promote a sense of urgency for action to halt the loss of biodiversity, and encourage people to act now. Please allow me the opportunity to tell you the messages for the International Year of Biodiversity: • Humans are part of nature’s rich diversity and have the power to protect or destroy it. • Biodiversity, the variety of life on earth, is essential to sustaining the living networks and systems that provide us all with health, wealth, food, fuel and the vital services our lives depend on. • Human activity is causing the diversity of life on earth to be lost at a greatly accelerated rate. These losses impoverish us all and damage the life support systems we rely on everyday. But we can prevent them. • 2010 is the International Year of Biodiversity; Let’s reflect on our achievements to safeguard biodi‑ versity and focus on the urgency of our challenge for the future. Now is the time to act.


6 These messages are the foundation for your messages throughout the year. Through these messages, you will urge your target audiences to take action and provide guidance for how they can contribute to the year. The year also includes a symbolic element. We have, thanks to the financial assistance of the government of Canada, created a logo for the year. It is my pleasure to show it to you now on the screen. The logo is designed to convey the concept of discovery and realization. A host of symbolic iconographic elements are included within the design to depict the scope of biodiversity, which includes marine, flora and fauna aspects. Together, they demonstrate how biodiversity is life and how we, as humans, are realizing our place within this journey. The logo consists of two core components. The year “2010” that frames the campaign and the logo elements and the iconographic elements symbolising biodiversity. These include fish, waves, a flamingo, an adult and child, and a tree. The logo is available in electronic format from the Secretariat for use in your campaigns. The International Year of Biodiversity is built on the examples of communities, governments and organizations that have been able to achieve the 2010 Biodiversity Target at different levels. Their stories will themselves become messages and models for future policy and action. They will be presented in a way that highlights their economic contribution to the lives of communities. The particularly important role of Indigenous and Local Communities will also be highlighted. Other examples of “2010 Success Stories” will be the work of the scientific community; the latest developments in biodiversity science and of course, the success realized by zoos and aquariums.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

The International Year of Biodiversity will be marked by celebrations at the national, regional, and international levels. While the International Year of Biodiversity will be a global event, the celebrations of the International Year will take place primarily at the national level. The success and prominence of the year will be the result of the collective actions of Parties to the Convention. It is expected that Parties will require some form of national organizing to accomplish their IYB mission. We are already aware of active committees in the UK, Belgium, Jamaica, The Netherlands and Ireland and many more are in formation. National Committees should have as wide a participation as is possible. We expect that National Committees will be constituted of a variety of stakeholders. You should be included in these national committees. International events will also be important: The main purpose behind all major international days and events will be to raise awareness about the need to save biodiversity and to present examples of commitments to conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, including 2010 Success Stories, and to demonstrate how these commitments will contribute to human well‑being and development. The goal will be to link these commitments to policy makers for future targets for the Convention. Some of the most important events include: • A launch of the International year of biodiversity in Berlin • The meeting of the Interacademy panel of the Royal Society in London. • A high level event organised by UNESCO in Paris, followed by a scientific conference • Global Ministerial Environment Forum in Bali • Earth Day – 22 April • The International Day for Biological Diversity 22 May • World Environment Day – 5 June • A high‑level segment of the UN General Assembly on Biodiversity 20 September • The Conference of the Parties Meeting in Nagoya Japan in October

In summary, let me say how you can be involved in the International Year: Adapt and adopt the messages, and transmit them among your networks; Promote success stories; Provide support and resources to national events; Build links between the biodiversity agenda and your programmes and activities; Organise and participate in events at key international meetings; Coordinate to become involved in the CBD process With COP10 approaching, the CBD and its partners are redoubling their efforts. We look forward to working more closely with zoos and aquariums in the future. Only by combining our efforts will we be able to preserve biodiversity and pass on a rich and stable environment to our children. Thank you for your kind attention.


7

October 2009 | St Louis

DOC 64.3rev

WAZA Congress Abstracts WAZA Congress (open to external participants, technical session). Theme: Zoos and Aquariums: Global Challenges, Opportunities and Strategies

Table of Contents Author Jane Smart | IUCN

Title The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: Reaching the WAZA Public

Simon Stuart | IUCN – SSC

The Species Extinction Crisis: Can We Win the Battle? No abstract received

Russ Mittermeier | Conservation International

Conservation Prioritisation: The Challenge of the Hot Spot Concept No abstract received

Katie Frohardt | Fauna, Flora International

Strategic Importance of Flagship Species & Habitats

Ward Hagemeijer | Wetlands international

Conservation, Human development & Poverty Alleviation: The Benefits & Challenges

Rick West | ICOM

New Challenges for ICOM‑International Council of Museums

Joanne Lalumière | Zoo de Granby

Dealing With the Media: Getting the Message Out!

Eric Stephens, Mario Campos & Michael Maunder | Miami Metrozoo, Jones & Jones, Al Ain Wildlife Park and Resort

Amazon and Beyond Exhibit at the Miami Metrozoo

Douglas Meyer | Bernuth & Williamson

The Ocean: New Research Insights for Conservation, Awareness & Action

Jan Willem Wijers

Multi‑Lingual Information: An Added Value for Zoos?

Jenny Gray & Rachel Lowry | Zoos Victoria

Behaviour Change Campaigns

Angela Alston | Niijii Films

A Sea Change: Imagine A World Without Fish

Robert Cook | WCS, Bronx Zoo

Zoological Organizations and Field Conservation – Opportunities to Collaborate for Long‑Term Conservation Success

John Newby | Sahara Conservation Fund

The Empty Quarter: The Sahara’s Neglected Wildlife

Susan Hunt | Perth Zoo

Building Capacity for Conservation in Bukit Tigapuluh, Sumatra

Eric Miller | Saint Louis Zoo

The St. Louis Zoos’ WildCare Institute 2004–2008: 5 Years of Growth & Collaboration

Martha Fischer | Saint Louis Zoo

International Elephant Foundation: Conservation of Elephants Around the World

Martha Fischer | Saint Louis Zoo

Grevy‘s Zebra Trust: Conservation of Grevy‘s Zebra in Kenya and Ethiopia

Gabriel Aguado | Fundación Temaikèn

Osununú Natural Reserve: A New Opportunity for Conservation & Local Development

Vishal Beri & Martin Phillips – presented by Susan Hunt | Perth Zoo

The Economic & Social Contribution of the Zoological Industry in Australia

Paul Pearce‑Kelly | ZSL

Climate Change & the Impact on Biodiversity: An Update

George Archibald | International Crane Foundation

The Impact of Climate Change and Globalization on Cranes Around the World

Jonathan Wilcken | Auckland Zoological Park

Global Species Mgmt: Sustaining the Ark‑The Need for Global Species Management

Dan Wharton & Robert Lacy | Brookfield Zoo & CBSG

The Value of Calculating Lifetime Offspring Goals for All Members of a Managed Population Using the New PMx

Iain Boardman – presented by Suzanne Boardman | Twycross Zoo

The Future is Now: Global Open Access for Global Challenges


8

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Jane Smart – The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: Reaching the WAZA Public

Katie Frohardt – Strategic Importance of Flagship Species & Habitats

The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species ™ is recognized as the world’s most objective and authoritative system for assessing risk of extinction of species. Despite high recognition amongst the conservation community it has relatively little recognition amongst the general public and private sector. A new Red List logo together with symbols depicting the IUCN Red List threat categories aim to raise awareness of the need for species conservation by engaging new target audiences. The presentation will explore their application in zoos and aquaria given their significant role in educating the public about conservation.

Fauna & Flora International – founded over 100 years ago – has as its mission “to conserve threatened species and ecosystems worldwide, choosing solutions that are sustain‑ able, based on sound science and take account of human needs.” Coupling our century of attention to the plight of some of the world’s most critically endangered species with our close partnerships with local organizations and communities who often value different parts of the biodiversity landscape, we crafted a focus on “flagship species and habitats” as we matured our presence in the US. My remarks will focus on the logic behind this focus on “flagships,” and on a definition and application that strategically leverages ecological, economic and cultural values to broaden the constituency for biodiversity conservation over time. Particularly relevant for a WAZA gathering are the opportunities a focus on flagships creates for in‑situ and ex‑situ conservation communities to collaborate effectively, and in a way that is of ever‑increasing relevance to the protection of the world’s biodiversity – a shared goal.

Simon Stuart – The Species Extinction Crisis: Can We Win the Battle? The IUCN Red List of shows that the status of the world’s species is deteriorating in all regions and in all taxonomic groups. However, three major ongoing extinction crises stand out in particular: amphibians, corals and Asian large animals. Nearly one‑third of the planet’s amphibians, one‑quarter of its reef‑building corals and nearly one‑quarter of its mammals are threatened or extinct. The world will only be able to stem the tide of species’ extinctions if there is a much larger and more focused response than has been the case up until now. It will be easiest to reduce the extinction rate in instances where the threats are clear and understood, and for which there are known remedies. For example, it should, in principle, be possible to win the battle on the Asian large animal crisis, and perhaps even the amphibian crisis. However, the coral crisis will be much harder to address, because it requires atmospheric CO2 to be stabilised at 350 ppm or less, and this will require a global political commitment that we have not yet seen. The conservation movement needs to mobilise public opinion in favour of radical action to reduce extinction rates.

Ward Hagemeijer – Conservation, Human Development & Poverty Alleviation: The Benefits & Challenges In the world of today conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity – as one of the major ecosystem services – are most likely to be successful, especially in the long term, if they happen in harmony with development. Important stakeholders, decision makers, donors and local communities alike, need to become the owners of such an integrated approach. Demonstrating the benefits of healthy ecosystem services for people, especially the natural resource dependent poor, can guarantee that development becomes (more) sustainable, and shift from a just a major threat to a potential opportunity. This requires a mind‑shift from the developers, but also from the conservation world!

Rick West – New Challenges for ICOM‑International Council of Museums In ICOM’s Strategic Plan, the term “global vision” of ICOM is defined as “a world where the importance of the natural and cultural heritage is universally valued.” To have intangible and tangible heritage valued, museums must act to raise awareness as well as to obtain resources for the task of preserving heritage and providing access to it. ICOM’s values supporting the achievement of these sometimes Herculean tasks are specified in the following five statements of the ICOM Strategic Plan: • ICOM values human creativity and its contribution to understanding the past, shaping the present, and planning the future; • ICOM believes that heritage has a humanistic value; • ICOM values global dialogue based on intellectual, cultural and social diversity; • ICOM values transparent dialogue including the cross‑cultural understanding of human rights; • ICOM recognizes museums’ social responsibility to engage with public issues of social change. The operative and important question is how ICOM translates these values into action. The answer to that question is that we act as a global network that anchors all its actions in these values.


9

October 2009 | St Louis

Joanne Lalumière – Dealing With the Media: Getting the Message Out! In financial challenging times, governments struggle to allocate public funding. The commercial side of Zoos with more marketing efforts often shadows conservation and education efforts. The important role of zoos and aquariums must not remain the best kept secret on the planet. We need to get the message out. Communication activities are crucial. Dealing strategically with the media and keeping ahead, as globalization and the Internet revolution rapidly change many rules of the game, is a must! It enhances positive perceptions and banks up, so to speak, the sympathy equity towards our organizations. If we are not proactive, others are!

Eric Stephens, Mario Campos & Michael Maunder – Amazon and Beyond Exhibit at the Miami Metrozoo

Douglas Meyer – The Ocean: New Research Insights for Conservation, Awareness & Action

wegian, Swedish, Hungarian, Greek, Flemish, Catalan, Thai, Korean, Fries, Basque, Galician, Breton, Welsh, Gallic, Icelandic, Hindi, Bahasa Indonesia, Papiamento, Sranan Tongo, Javanese, We are an unprecedented initiative Afrikaans, Ukrainian, Tartar, Kazakh, that intends to create in people a last- Uzbek etc. {see enclosed file for more ing, measurable awareness of the extensive list} Suggestion for the importance, value, and sensitivity of content could be: the ocean. We believe that the single • Translation of [current already availgreatest impediment to healthy and able] signage for each animal; productive marine and coastal areas • Dynamic map; is the public’s low level of ocean • The latest information on the enawareness. dangerment of the species.

Through this collaboration among aquariums, zoos, science, technology, and natural history museums, and other educational institutions that together serve more than  200 million visitors each year, The Ocean Project aims to significantly increase the success of ocean conservation. The Ocean Project seeks to complement and build upon the work of existing institutions and organizations. We also collaborate with local, regional, and national nonprofit conservation and environmental organizations to actively involve people in conservation activities in their communities and better connect them to the ocean.

The success of Miami Metrozoo’s Amazon and Beyond exhibit was born from a simple question “What can the zoo do to promote conservation in the world’s biodiversity hot‑spots?” Jan Willem Wijers – The ensuing dialogue produced an ex- Multi‑Lingual Information: hibit that provides Miami and its peo- An Added Value for Zoos? ple with a window to conservation initiatives in the rain forests of South Last February, at the EAZA conferand Central America. Miami’s Latin ence in Cologne, my presentation was American influenced population about my idea to make it possible provided the cultural connection for for international Zoo’s, to address this exhibit while the City’s climate their international visitors in their In provided an ideal setting for simulatown language, and earn money with ing tropical rain forests. This presenit for the Zoo. To be able to do this, tation will illustrate how to discover it is necessary to create a platform and capitalize on each zoo’s unique of interested parties. Of the total assets to help save wild places. ~80 Languages in the World, the relevance for a ZOO in say Western Europe would be 36. Some essential languages (24), some desirable (12) and the other languages are welcome but not essential. Ranking from Essential through desirable to very welcome: English, Spanish, French, German, Arabic, Russian, Japanese, Portuguese, Chinese, Dutch, Italian, Turkish, Polish, Finnish, Danish, Nor-

The win‑win is in the translation. With two translation steps, 20~40 or more languages of your own information will be created. So: First translation from local language information to English; Second the translation of the edited English information into the local language; Result: More relevant information and multi‑lingual accessibility. The information will be presented on a specially developed tablet PC with touch screen, approx. the size of an A‑4 sheet. (Lightweight and with a shoulder belt) It will be silent information meant for foreigners and group leaders/teachers to help them educating the children at the moment and place they want. Many additional items can be added in later years. It will be open for extensive information. Visitors can rent the devices. The revenues can be used either for research projects or any other necessity of the Zoo. How to finance this? I searched and found an enthusiastic person that is willing to help start this huge flywheel. Because of that we can ‘donate’ the Zoo’s the devices together with the software and the service. Through Internet we can build the information and Zoo’s can share best practices. So, no investment required from the Zoo’s, only man‑hours for translation and building the content.


10 Jenny Gray & Rachel Lowry – Behaviour Change Campaigns The processes threatening biodiversity across the globe are numerous and varied, yet the majority have one thing in common – humans. Zoos therefore have the potential to conserve wildlife by influencing the very people that walk through their gates each year. Research suggests that visitors are fatigued from lofty ‘you can do this at home’ style messages. They like to do things now, not later, and expect the links to be tangible. This is great news for the 21st century zoo as contemporary theories emerging from the social sciences provide us with strategies for designing behaviour change campaigns.

Angela Alston – A Sea Change: Imagine A World Without Fish Did you know climate change affects the ocean? Some of the excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is dissolving into seawater. It’s changing the pH, making seawater more acidic; some say “corrosive.” This water actually dissolves the shells of certain shellfish and coral reefs. The effects are working their way up the food chain. A Sea Change is a new documentary about this phenomenon, ocean acidification, directed by Barbara Ettinger and starring Sven Huseby of Niijii Films. Chock full of scientific information, the film is also a beautiful paen to the ocean world and an intimate study of a family. The film has screened at the DC Environmental Film Festival and San Francisco International Film Festival. “[A Sea Change] follows ex‑history teacher, activist and grandfather Sven Huseby as he travels to visit various scientists to learn more about the impacts of ocean acidification and tries to find ways to explain the problem to his 5-year‑old grandson, Elias. I completely fell in love with Sven and the extraordinarily bright Elias. The people in the film are very real and approachable and the ocean footage is stunning. Optimistic, with a whole section of solutions at the end. Broad appeal for all ages.”—Dr. Cat Dorey, Sustainable Seafood Advisor, Greenpeace International

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

A Sea Change is the first documentary on ocean acidification, the underbelly of climate change. Imagine a world without fish: if ocean chemistry continues to change because of excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, a bottom‑up collapse of the sea food chain could result. The film combines the intimate story of a Norwegian family whose life is bound up with the sea with an investigation into the science of ocean acidification. A Sea Change made its world premiere at the DC Environmental Film Festival in March, to a standing‑room‑only audience at the National Museum of Natural History. Additional screenings include the San Francisco and Seattle film festivals.

Robert Cook – Zoological Organizations and Field Conservation-Opportuni‑ ties to Collaborate for Long‑Term Conservation Success Zoological institutions of the 21st century are broadening their missions beyond exhibition and education and having a direct and positive impact on the conservation of wildlife in their native habitats. The WAZA website lists 133 in‑situ conservation projects being supported by its members. The AZA in its 2006 Conservation Impact Report lists 824 new projects and 983 continuing projects (total 1807) which in a variety of ways connect their members to conservation. With multi‑factorial threats to habitats and species increasing, the need to conserve has become even more critical. Zoological institutions are unique amongst conservation organizations in their knowledge and expertise in species management, especially managing rare species in limited habitats. As more zoological institutions seek to become involved in field conservation the profession should consider developing processes that ensure highest and best use of resources, longevity of commitment, measurements of success and establishing mutually beneficial collaborations amongst our organizations that re‑enforce our leadership in wildlife conservation.

This presentation will review the work of The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) as well as a number of other zoological park based conservation programs and the potential for further collaborations amongst member institutions to support conservation in the field. It will review the transformation process recently undergone by WCS that defines the mission critical elements and the global challenges as well as the programmatic initiatives that build a cohesive enterprise‑wide commitment to conservation in the field and in our parks. As a profession we have taken significant steps to broaden our conservation commitment to include in‑situ activities. However, in many cases these efforts are projects and not programs, they are nascent endeavors that may lack coordination between institutions and fail to ensure long‑term sustainability for successful conservation outcomes. A framework for collaboration will be presented that facilitates meaningful contributions and ownership by those zoological organizations just entering into in‑situ conservation as well as supports those who have established the in‑situ infrastructure but are striving for sustainability.


11

October 2009 | St Louis

John Newby – The Empty Quarter: The Sahara’s Neglected Wildlife

Susan Hunt – Building Capacity for Conservation in Bukit Tigapuluh, Sumatra

Eric Miller – The St Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute 2004–2008: 5 Years of Growth & Collaboration

In what many are calling a “silent extinction”, the large bird and mammal fauna of the Sahara and Sahel is facing an unprecedented crisis barely noticed by the conservation community. Decades of over‑hunting have brought many species to the brink of extinction. One, the scimitar‑horned oryx, is already gone, with others like the addax, dama, dorcas and slender‑horned gazelles, cheetah, ostrich and bustards sure to follow if nothing is done. With enormous support from the zoo communities in the United States and Europe, the Sahara Conservation Fund was established in 2004 to address this crisis through three interrelated themes: the conservation of existing wildlife populations, the reintroduction of species that have disappeared from their home ranges, and by communicating the value of deserts and the crisis facing their natural resources. The partnership between the zoo community, with its assets and knowhow, and an international conservation NGO has proven to be an effective one playing to the strengths of both parties in an effective and mutually beneficial way.

Working with partners the Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS), the Indonesian Government and NGOs, Perth Zoo has been working to conserve wildlife and landscape at Bukit Tigapuluh National Park and its surrounds in Sumatra, Indonesia.

Launched in 2004, the Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute has provided five years of support for field conservation in the US and around the world. Funded with a $19 million US gift from the Saint Louis Zoo Friends Association and with proceeds from the Zoo’s Conservation Carousel, WildCare has an annual budget of $1.1 million US for support of conservation, field research and sustainable community development. These efforts focused on specific conservation programs, from American burying beetles in Missouri to Grevy’s zebras in the Horn of Africa. A hallmark of this work has been collaboration with over 180 partners including other zoos, universities, governmental and non‑governmental organizations, as well as active participation in international zoo‑based conservation collaboratives such as the Madagascar Fauna Group and Sahara Conservation Fund.

As a result of successful conservation outcomes being achieved there, three more Australasian zoos have now joined FZS and Perth Zoo to support conservation of this unique area of Sumatra. Bukit Tigapulu contains enormous biodiversity, including Sumatran Tigers, Elephants, Asian Tapirs, Clouded Leopards and as a result of a re‑introduction program, Sumatran Orangutan. A Perth Zoo born Sumatran Orangutan was also successfully re‑introduced into the Park in November 2006. The combined efforts have been effective in protecting the landscape of Bukit Tigapuluh and has created strong awareness of the importance of protecting it for the future.


12

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Martha Fischer – International Elephant Foundation: Conservation of Elephants Around the World

Gabriel Aguado – Osununú Natural Reserve: A New Opportunity for Con‑ servation & local development

The International Elephant Foundation (IEF) is a non‑profit organization formed in 1998 to promote the conservation of African and Asian elephants through habitat protection, scientific investigation, education and improvements in zoo elephant care. Since its inception, IEF and its contributing supporters have contributed over $1.3 million to elephant conservation around the world. This paper will highlight the critical support that the international zoo community is providing to in situ and ex situ elephant conservation, with specific reference to its ongoing conservation partnerships in Sumatra and Kenya and its supported research programs related to Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus.

Temaikén Foundation owns a natural reserve called Osununú of 174 hectares located in San Ignacio surrounded by the Provincial ParkTeyúCuaré. This area has a great ecological value due to its biodiversity, endemism and landscapes. The implementation of management rules for conservation ensures the protection of natural ecosystems. These actions offer suitable ecological conditions for wildlife and establish this reserve as a conservation corridor and buffer zone to the surrounding Provincial Park. Temaiken Foundation ensures the protection of natural ecosystems by providing adequate balancing conditions for wildlife, as well as environmental education opportunities to local people, respecting natural social, cultural and historical values.

Martha Fischer – Grevy’s Zebra Trust: Conservation of Grevy’s Zebra in Kenya and Ethiopia In the last four decades, Grevy’s zebras have undergone a catastrophic decline in both abundance and distribution. The Grevy’s Zebra Trust focuses on the conservation of Grevy’s zebra and its semi‑arid ecosystem in the community rangelands of Kenya and Ethiopia. Its activities center on: employment of communities to protect/monitor the species; support of education for pastoral children; community awareness; partnering on research projects that link directly to management; and rangeland rehabilitation through planned livestock grazing. This paper will highlight the critical support that the international zoo community has provided to Grevy’s zebra conservation in the last five years.

Vishal Beri & Martin Phillips – The Economic & Social Contribution of the Zoological Industry in Australia The paper is a based on a report that we prepared for the Australasian Regional Association of Zoological Parks and Aquaria (ARAZPA) in March 2009. We discuss the zoological industry’s contribution to the Australian economy and society in terms of: • Economic value – Gross Domestic Product, employment and tourism. • Value for consumers based on visitor survey results, financial support for zoos and consumer surplus. • Conservation value including the type and results of in‑situ and ex‑situ programs and research. • Education value including success in raising conservation awareness and motivating behaviour change. • Value of contribution to bio‑security.

Paul Pearce‑Kelly – Climate Change & the Impact on Biodiversity: An Update Last year’s situation overview by Professor Barry Brook left us in no doubt as to the all pervasive nature and severity of the climate change threat. A stated concern that the Great Barrier Reef may already have passed viability threshold levels as far as the synergistic threats of climate change and ocean acidification are concerned was subsequently confirmed by the 6 July 2009 Royal Society meeting of a coral reef crisis working group’s statement and associated publication (Veron et at 2009) which identified the need to reduce CO2 atmospheric levels as far below 350 ppm as possible for coral reef ecosystems to remain viable (we are currently at 387 ppm). It is all the more alarming therefore that emission rates are tracking the worst case IPCC emissions scenario and that destruction of essential natural systems, such as forests, peat-bogs and grasslands, continue to be destroyed at record rates. Their loss is greatly exacerbating the C02 emissions problem both in terms of direct contributory emissions and as reduced sink capacity. Last year we also reviewed how the conservation community’s response ability has progressed and where our engagement efforts might best be focused. The CBSG climate change working group report detailed a range of actions to improve our ability to better incorporate climate change threat factors into our conservation work, including the critical need for improved public engagement at all levels within our community.


13

October 2009 | St Louis

The last year has seen some significant developments in terms of response capacity. These include improvements to our species impact evaluation procedure, completion of the Web-enabled information database www. Bioclimate.org and the above mentioned clarification of viability threshold levels for coral reef systems. The intention of this presentation is to provide colleagues with a brief report on these developments and to encourage discussion in the dedicated WAZA working group as to how our community can best respond to the climate change engagement challenge.

George Archibald – The Impact of Climate Change and Globalization on Cranes Around the World Pressure on wild bird populations is steadily increasing as a result of habitat loss, climate change and a variety of human‑induced threats such as power lines and toxic chemicals. This confluence of threats is resulting in an increasing number of species being placed on the IUCN threatened species status list.

Jonathan Wilcken – Global Species Mgmt: Sustaining the Ark – The Need for Global Species Management In the World Zoo and Aquarium Conservation Strategy, the world’s leading zoos commit to focusing their efforts on conserving wildlife. Unsustainable practices are driving many species of wildlife towards extinction and zoos are attempting to counter these practices in a variety of ways. However, to date, this same group of zoos has largely failed to manage its own populations of wildlife sustainably. This is despite distinguished calls to action over the past 25 years, significant scientific input and much organizational effort. This paper applies concepts of population sustainability to zoo programs and proposes a framework for assessing and establishing sustainability.

Current regional species management programs are reviewed. Few, if any, could be considered sustainable. A substantial shift in zoo priorities is required to address this. Key is the development of a philosophy of sustainability to underpin institutional collection planning and facility development, renewed investment in professional population biologists and prioritising research and development of husbandry expertise focused specifically on improving population management outcomes. Above all, for most species, true sustainability will only be achieved through coordinated global planning and management. The authors call upon WAZA to make this initiative its highest priority.

Dan Wharton & Robert Lacy – The Value of Calculating Lifetime Offspring Goals for All Members of a Managed Population Using the New PMx The concept of mean kinship as a measure of relative breeding value has provided an invaluable basis for making breeding recommendations in managed populations. Traditionally, this has allowed managers to identify the least‑represented animals in the population and to make them the highest priority for immediate breeding. As such, it leaves open the question of when, and to what degree, much better‑represented animals should breed. „The offspring goals “component of the new PMx program allows managers to calculate and visualize lifetime offspring goals for all members of the population, making it easier to accommodate demographic and social management priorities while pursuing an excellent program of genetic management.

Ian Boardman – The Future is Now: Global Open Access for Global Challenges Wildlife Information Network (WIN) provides scientific information on the health and management of wild animials, and emerging infectious diseases, to veteriarians, conservationists and wildlife professionals worldwide, including many academic institutions. Wildpro is now moving from Open Access in the developing world to global Open Access. The global challenge is to ensure optimum husbandry for all wild animals in human care while maintaining adequate captive populations of a growing number of endangered species as well as educating visitors to zoos and aquariums. Wildpro‘s Open Access ensures reliable information is available to disseminate and encourage best practice.


14 POSTER PRESENTATIONS Patricia G. Parker, Sharon L. Deem & R. Eric Miller – Conservation Medicine of Endemic Galapagos Birds Since 2001, we have led a 4-institution collaboration to address threats posed by novel pathogens to the endemic birds of the Galapagos Islands. We have examined more than 6000 individuals representing 26 native species on 16 islands, 3 domestic or introduced species, and documented: (1) pathogens with long histories with their avian hosts; (2) those that jumped from one host species to another; and (3) those that are recent arrivals, some with major impact. Emphasis is placed on particularly harmful pathogens such as the avian pox virus and recently detected Plasmodium which may be a recent arrival.

Cheryl Asa – Contraceptive Methods & Products for Zoos A primary objective of the AZA Wildlife Contraception Center is to disseminate up-to-date information on contraceptive products, so that wildlife managers and veterinarians can make informed choices. Retrospective analysis of our database, with over 23’000 records, of contraceptive use in zoo animals, combined with prospective studies, have revealed significant species differences in efficacy, safety and reversibility of the currently available methods. These results allow us to formulate appropriate recommendations for each taxon. In addition, we work with scientists who are developing new contraceptives, to identify and evaluate promising approaches for the wide range of species needing reproductive management.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Miquel Trepat – The Barcelona Zoo transformation. A new Zoo for a New Century

Pavel Moucha – The first reintroduction of rhinoceros from Zoo Dvůr Králové to the wild

Barcelona is a city with an old zoological tradition. We are very excited with a challenge that implies the developing of a new zoo model which creates an approach consistent with the international strategy for conservation and biodiversity, maintaining at the same time the emotional link between the animals and the city.

The poster informs about reintroduction of three (2.1) zoo‑bred Eastern black rhinos (Diceros bicornis michaeli) from Dvůr Králové zoo (Czech Republic) into Mkomazi NP (Tanzania).

In the poster, we will explain our plans for the future, as well as the new concept of the Barcelona Zoo and its main purposes.

John Newby – From Addax to Zorilla: Conser‑ ving Saharan Wildlife The addax is one of the planet’s most endangered species; it is also one of its most exquisitely adapted to life in one of the harshest environments known, the Sahara desert. The last viable population of addax – some two to three hundred animals – live in Eastern Niger. Action to save the addax and several other endangered species from extinction (see IUCN Red List below) is underway. In partnership between Niger’s Ministry of the Environment, the Sahara Conservation Fund (SCF), the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), the Fonds Francaise pour l’Environnement Mondial (FFEM) and the European Union, a vast new protected area is being established in the Termit and in Tin Toumma regions. Establishing the reserve and implementing an effective programme to conserve the addax, its habitat and related species calls for innovative approaches to addressing a broad array of issues relevant to the preservation and sustainable use of this remarkable environment.


October 2009 | St Louis

Received Full WAZA Congress Contributions

15


16

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

The Strategic Importance of Flagship Species and Habitats Katie Frohardt – Executive Director of Fauna & Flora International, Inc.

Abstract of remarks Fauna & Flora International – founded over 100 years ago – has as its mission “to conserve threatened species and ecosystems worldwide, choosing solutions that are sustain‑ able, based on sound science and take account of human needs.” Coupling our century of attention to the plight of some of the world’s most critically endangered species with our close partnerships with local organizations and communities who often value different parts of the biodiversity landscape, we crafted a focus on “flagship species and habitats” as we matured our presence in the US. My remarks will focus on the logic behind this focus on “flagships,” and on a definition and application that strategically leverages ecological, economic and cultural values to broaden the constituency for biodiversity conservation over time. Particularly relevant for a WAZA gathering are the opportunities a focus on flagships creates for in-situ and ex-situ conservation communities to collaborate effectively, and in a way that is of ever-increasing relevance to the protection of the world’s biodiversity – a shared goal.

Slide 1: Thank you for having me here today – it is a pleasure to be with this group, and to speak to issues that I believe are perhaps more important, more relevant, and indeed urgent than ever – at least in our lifetimes. Slide 2: A brief word on Fauna & Flora International to set the context for my remarks today. We have been focused since our founding in 1903 on the protection of biodiversity, and doing this in ways that fundamentally improve the quality of life for humans and wildlife alike. I believe in many corners of the world we are perhaps best known for our quiet approach, and our work that is always done in partnership with local partners, doing the long-term work of building conservation capacity in special corners around the world. Slide 3: I took my place for FFI 6 years ago, after having worked with the organization in Rwanda running a longstanding mountain gorilla conservation program a decade prior. This remains my bedrock, and informs my approach and focus for FFI in the US now, and indeed my remarks today. Slide 4: Working from the US for FFI, I quickly found both a crowded international conservation workplace, and what I considered gaps in implementation focus and effectiveness. I sought to “get back to basics,” and focus in on the needs of our field programs and their local partners, and move technical and financial support out to them efficiently from the US. We’ve built a track record of lean success to date.

Slide 5: Leveraging our century of attention to the plight of some of the world’s most critically endangered species, and coupling that with our close partnerships with local organizations who often value different parts of the biodiversity landscape than do scientists seeking to save species on the brink, a focus on flagships emerged. In the US, this is where I found the interest and support of our emerging US constituency clustering. We joined this to our expertise in this area, and articulated a US strategy for FFI around flagships. Slide 6: How is this strategic? I actually won’t spend much time today making this case, as I think with this group in particular I probably don’t need to, but briefly here reference three points: First, in these times of escalating threats (notably climate change, but also continuing loss of habitat to agriculture and resource extraction), this affords us a strong point of focus, a rallying point for really targeted – and sustained – conservation action. Second, and important to FFI given our biodiversity focus, is that it keeps the focus on biodiversity – in seeing the value not only of forests for carbon storage attributes, but for their full complement of biodiversity and the ecosystem services they support, avoiding an empty forest syndrome at all cost. So, seeing the trees for the forest. And third, I have found that it provides an exceptional opportunity


17

October 2009 | St Louis

to forge all types of partnerships, and in so doing to make progress on what we all need to do in order to succeed in our shared goal of global biodiversity protection – and that is making conservation relevant to a much broader cross section of people. Particularly for zoos and conservation organizations, focusing on flagships I believe is a wonderful opportunity for partnership that allows us to capitalize on our respective skill sets.

Slide 8: The global prioritization work of many US international conservation organizations has permitted us to make progress in figuring out areas of focus – what is most endangered, where are the areas of highest endemism, where do we have small populations most at risk of near term extinction, and so on. That said, often these points of focus do not necessarily align with what communities most value. For example, a study of British and Tanzanian school children explored how they value different animals as flagships (see FFI, Oryx, 36 (2) 189–295). In the study, children were asked to name their favorite animals. The British kids tended to select traditional flagship species such as tiger and lion – things that live far away, and that have traits like ferocity. Tanzanian kids chose animals like zebra or giraffe, and indicated their attractiveness and the quality of their meat, and also elephants even though there was some fear of them because of the role they play in generating revenue through tourism.

Slide 7: The word “flagship” has been used in different ways by different people and sectors, over time. Some use it in an ecological sense, referring to umbrella or keystone species, and arguing that protection of these species ensures that of many others. Others have used it more in economic, and often in marketing terms – and this includes many of the charismatic megafauna like mountain gorillas, tigers, elephants, and so on. Here too the logic and the communications focus on these species being effective ambassadors for other species or indeed for broader ecosystems (e.g., invest in the mountain gorilla and Slide 9 & 10: Exploring the different we will ensure afro-montane habitat ways in which people value nature, conservation). To these two usages, and what that means for the manwe add a third, which has been a foagement of landscapes like national cus of FFI for some time, and I think parks, in 2005 FFI launched an inis of strategic importance for both novative program in Uganda with the in-situ and ex-situ conservation comsupport of the John D. and Catherine munities, particularly in light of the T. MacArthur Foundation. Working changing times in which we live. And with the Uganda Wildlife Authority that is this – what value do human and communities surrounding two communities place on ecosystems, national parks – Lake Mburo and the and species, with whom they live in Rwenzoris – we have explored how proximity. Which of these might we to integrate cultural values into park consider flagships from their perspec- management. Together we identified tive? cultural values that would add meaning to parks and formed associations around them -- the Ankole Cows Cultural Association and the Rwenzori Mountains Cultural Conservation Association. Along the way, flagships that express cultural values have been our focus – like the Ankole cow. This has been a fascinating pilot program, now in its second phase, and one that we are eager to expand both in Uganda, more broadly in Africa, and indeed globally – improving park management, mitigating conflict with surrounding communities, and strengthening the expression of local culture and traditional knowledge.

Slide 11: This trio of definitions and points of view on flagships – ecological, economic, cultural – combine to create a compelling platform from which we can expand the constituency for conservation. Slide 12: Just over the past 6 years focusing on this for FFI, I have enjoyed the partnerships we’ve developed around shared flagship priorities with the zoo community. I offer one example here, with John Lewis and Connie Morgan of Los Angeles Zoo, pictured with Tuy Sereivathana, our Asian elephant conservation coordinator in Cambodia. LA Zoo has long supported our work with Asian elephants in Cambodia, and Vathana visited the zoo this year and gave a lecture. He also happily wrote a strong letter of support when LA Zoo was experiencing some push back on their efforts to improve enclosures for elephants at their zoo. In this and so many other ways, working together around flagships offers us an effective way together to grow the constituency for conservation, and make this work relevant to more and more people over time. Slide 13: Thank you for your time today. I look forward to deepening our data set on the strategic importance of flagships through collaboration with you all in the years to come. Katie Frohardt | Fauna & Flora International | Katie.frohardt@fauna-flora.org


18

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

New Challenges for ICOM – International Council of Museums W. Richard West, Jr. – Vice-President, International Council of Museums (ICOM) Presented on behalf of Alissandra Cummins – President of ICOM

Ladies, Gentlemen, Friends, and Colleagues: I want to begin by expressing, with real enthusiasm, my genuine gratitude for your inviting me to join you at the 64th WAZA Annual Conference here in St. Louis and to offer these brief remarks on behalf of the President of the International Council of Museums, Ms. Alissandra Cummins. Allow me to first to “background” this international organization called ICOM for those of you who may not be as familiar with it as others. Its Mission aspiration is captured in the following very simple but telling declaration: “The museum is an institution in the service of society and its development.” The guiding principles of ICOM – largely outlined in the ICOM Code of Ethics for Museums – place museums within the fabric of society and a framework of recommended legal and responsible professional conduct to protect the heritage entrusted to museums for present and future generations. All members of ICOM agree to abide by the Code of Ethics, as well as to apply the concept of “stewardship” and the specific implementing requirements articulated in the Code, all of which are considered minimum standards for professional conduct in the museum community.

At ICOM’s General Conference in Vienna in 2007, and through the ICOM Strategic Plan for 2008–2010, ICOM further underscored that what binds the diversity of museum professionals throughout the world is, indeed, a recognized set of commonly held “core values”. These core values unify museums in their diversity, define their mission and vision, and more specifically, determine their responsibilities in the global community. I would like to review briefly those elements of responsibility in the Stra‑ tegic Plan that derive directly from values established in the ICOM Code of Ethics for Museums. In ICOM’s Stra‑ tegic Plan, the term “global vision” of ICOM is defined as “a world where the importance of the natural and cultural heritage is universally valued.” To have intangible and tangible heritage valued, museums must act to raise awareness as well as to obtain resources for the task of preserving heritage and providing access to it. ICOM’s values supporting the achievement of these sometimes Herculean tasks are specified in the following five statements of the ICOM Strategic Plan: • ICOM values human creativity and its contribution to understanding the past, shaping the present, and planning the future; • ICOM believes that heritage has a humanistic value; • ICOM values global dialogue based on intellectual, cultural and social diversity; • ICOM values transparent dialogue including the cross-cultural understanding of human rights; • ICOM recognizes museums’ social responsibility to engage with public issues of social change.

The operative and important question is how ICOM translates these values into action. The answer to that question is that we act as a global network that anchors all its actions in these values. Let me now briefly mention a number of ICOM’s current and future activities, as well as their considerable geographic reach in the global museum community.

In Asia:

ICOM will be holding its second recent General Conference in Asia. From November 7 to 12, 2010, 3,000 museum professionals from all parts of the world are expected in Shanghai, China. We hope, more than ever, to attract many colleagues to participate in this important and programmatic triennial event for ICOM. ICOM will also participate in the World Expo from May to October, 2010 in the same city. That occasion represents a valuable opportunity for ICOM to communicate its Mission side-by-side with other often related international and global organisations.

In Arabic countries:

A new publication regarding this region will be promulgated to reinforce the fight against the illicit traffic of art works in this part of the world.


October 2009 | St Louis

In Africa:

19

• Facilitating and honoring the imple- Almost 10,000 members are affiliated with our 30 International Committees, mentation of international convenwhich offer a wide variety of museum tions, specifically the UNESCO conventions on international legislation disciplines from education to conservation to modern art. Among these • Convention on International Trade International Committees, I would in Endangered Species of like to pay special tribute to the Wild Fauna and Flora (1973); International Committee for Natural • United Nations Convention History – NATHIST, one of our most on Biological Diversity (1992) In Latin America: active Committees, whose focus and • Standards of Practice Several publications concerning this activities adjoin WAZA’s own with • Academic and scientific region will be issued, including “Red respect to zoo and aquarium museum responsibilities in which members Lists” of stolen or trafficked objects for collections. of the museum profession should Mexico, other parts of Central America, promote the investigation, and Colombia. In addition, one of the New challenges remain, however, preservation, and use of most important events for ICOM will for ICOM and probably for all of us, information inherent in the be in this region in the coming years: especially in the context of economic collections Rio de Janeiro, which appears to be on downturn that may considerably • Dealing in natural or a real roll at the moment, was voted as restructure museums. And I will de cultural heritage the host city of ICOM’s 2013 General scribe only a few of the most signifiConference. This region is waiting eacant challenges: Finally, allow me to introduce to you gerly to develop their museums and to one of ICOM’s major events that en• funding problems: not only the seek further exchange with colleagues livens and unifies our global museum difficulty for fund-raising, but also from around the globe. budget restrictions in the funding of community – International Museum public agencies Day – celebrated every May 18th. This In these diverse parts of the world designated date provides a broad and • social problems: with an aging sowhere the dynamics of museum meaningful opportunity for muciety and a rising middle class, new creation and a desire for knowledge seum professionals to meet with the categories of populations are exand expertise co-inhabit, ICOM will public and to communicate the main pecting renewed and more adapted continue to infuse the possibilities challenges that they in particular offers from the world of museums for the future with its principles and face as public institutions dedicated • environmental problems: the tender values relating to ethical and responto society, its continuing developbalance is difficult to discern somesible conduct, dialogue and collabora- ment, and the public welfare and times between development on the tion among cultures, and openness, good. In connection with this event, one hand and the preservation of accessibility, and accountability for ICOM would be delighted to study heritage on the other heritage. mutually beneficial paths of cooperation with WAZA, and to develop Let me take this opportunity to In this context, ICOM would very further the substance and impact of reiterate and to emphasize again the much like to explore actively the International Museum Day among importance of our working together potential common terrain that exists your important community, as we on all the issues I have just adbetween us – WAZA and ICOM. And strongly believe that the targets are dressed – and the significant potenhere I would like to enumerate, even the same for both us on a range of tial of that collaboration. On behalf if only as teasers in their time-conissues, including, for example and to of the President and the Executive cite only two of the most obvious, the Council of ICOM, allow me to offer strained brevity, some of the poseconomy and tourism. my best wishes for an excellent and sibilities: productive conference over the next • The care of the collections In closing, today the International several days and your graciousness in • Protected biological Council of Museums has nearly asking me to join you today. or geological specimens 30,000 members in 155 countries. • Living collections ICOM is very privileged to benefit Many thanks for your kind attention • The welfare of live animals from the expertise and knowledge of this afternoon. • The development of new knowla number of museums and museum edge, particularly through partprofessionals from your own communerships in research and capacity nity of zoos and aquariums, as in the W. Richard West, Jr. | building, which includes co-operaspecific cases of the Royal Melbourne ICOM, Washington, DC | tion between museums and other Zoo, the Bermuda Aquarium, and w.richard.west@gmail.com institutions the Museum of Zoology in Teheran, among others from further regions of the world. ICOM’s relationships with AFRICOM, one of our affiliated international organizations, will be renewed based on the long history between the two organisations as well as the present challenging situation in this region.


20

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Dealing with the Media: Getting the Message Out Joanne Lalumière – Executive Director, Granby Zoo

Ms Lalumière holds a Bachelor degree in Geography, in Agricultural Sciences and a Master’s Degree in Environ‑ mental Sciences. Between 1975 and 1994, she has held various positions at Hydro-Québec, as an advisor, a pro‑ ject manager and department head for environmental impact studies of hydro projects. She then worked for the Canadian Electricity Association as vice-president Electricity Genera‑ tion and Trade and back to Hydro from 1996 to 1998 as principal director of Communications and Environment. From 1998 to 2003, she was a consult‑ ant in strategic planning and environ‑ mental issues. Since 2003, she holds the Executive Director position at the Granby Zoo in Québec, Canada. Since her arrival, the Zoo has invested more than 50 million dollars (CDN) to mod‑ ernize and upgrade the facility.

Abstract In financial challenging times, governments struggle to allocate public funding. The commercial side of zoos with more marketing efforts often shadows conservation and education efforts. The important role of zoos and aquariums must not remain the best kept secret on the planet. We need to get the message out. Communication activities are crucial. Dealing strategically with the media and keeping ahead, as globalization and the Internet revolution rapidly change many rules of the game, is a must! It enhances positive perceptions and banks up, so to speak, the sympathy equity towards our organizations. If we are not proactive, others are!

Introduction Before getting actively involved in strategic media relations, it is wise to have a good knowledge about the strengths and weaknesses of our organizations as well as the threats and opportunities they face. This is part of the preparedness required before engaging in any media relations. The importance of communication which includes media relations is touched upon before covering what is understood by strategic media relations. Additional perspective is provided through the evolution of media relations at the Granby Zoo and illustrated with some examples. The main key success factors for good media relations are then reviewed before ending with the importance of developing a web strategy within any communication strategy and how to gain efficient use of this growing information technology.

Knowledge of our organisations: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats Knowledge about the fundamental nature of our organisations is a must for any communication strategy. Without going into unnecessary details for the purpose of this presentation, it is possible to rely on the initial steps any organisation goes through when carrying out a strategic planning process. Defining strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats is usually a very revealing exercise as shown by the following:

Strengths The main strengths of zoos and aquariums are undoubtedly their animal collections, the quality of their installations and the quality of the data on those collections. The accreditation process provides credibility and strength to these elements. The unique expertise and dedication of all personnel and staff, the education programs and the fabulous outreach capacity of zoos and aquariums (175 millions visitors in North America and 600 million worldwide) can also be accounted for in the strengths of an organisation. The positive perception by the public is also of significant importance. Finally and not least, the incredible value of the collective and worldwide efforts in conservation and reproduction of endangered species constitutes an asset which holds a high potential of media and public interest.


21

October 2009 | St Louis

Weaknesses

Threats

Among some of the weaknesses of many organisations are the constant financial struggles they are faced with to survive, some without any governmental support. The lack of marketing and particularly communication expertise within many zoos and aquariums can result in some shyness and discomfort when dealing with the media. Some issues can also be source of potentially questionable stories, such as some reproductive issues or the aging of many animals in zoo collections responsible for higher death tolls in some cases.

The zoo and aquarium community also faces some threats that must not be taken lightly. The lack of appropriate funding can result in diminished capacity to meet standards and increase exposure to criticism. The impact of activist groups that target zoos and misinform the public is to be taken seriously as these groups are well organised and cleverly use the new information technologies to increase their outreach capacity and zone of influence. In some cases, the limited reproductive capacity for certain species in zoos may have a negative effect and feed activist groups’ messages. Finally, increasing regulations, although out of good intentions in most cases, can constitute a threat if they do not consider the expertise of accredited zoos and aquariums personnel and do not seek their contribution.

The large number of non accredited zoos (9 times the number of accredited zoos in North America) is also of concern as this means that generalisation is easily made from sub-standard conditions than the opposite. To a lesser degree, the fact that conservation efforts of zoos and aquariums remains quite unknown to the public and the media can be considered a weakness given the high potential of these efforts to increase awareness about global climate change threats to biodiversity and to support call to action by other NGO’s on such issues.

Opportunities Based on the strengths already mentioned, there are great opportunities to capitalize on and many do so already. It is well known that people love animals and stories. Zoos and aquariums offer both. They are a source of good reproduction stories, conservation stories, enrichment stories and also environment-related stories. Behind the scenes and close encounter activities also offer great opportunities to enhance any communication effort. Globalization and the increasing coordination efforts between organizations involved in conservation can only lead to greater public awareness on threats to wildlife and need for conservation efforts which is good news. Finally, the web revolution if used adequately can prove to be a powerful tool.

Importance of Communication Communication is of the utmost importance to influence perception about our organizations, to increase our notoriety and to create links with our different audiences and stakeholders. It offers a voice to our experts to get the conservation messages out and to attract scientific partners. Well done communication can enhance one’s reputation and helps draw increased media attention. There are many communication and marketing tools that come at varying costs and require minimal to more extensive efforts. The objectives pursued usually dictate the nature and the choice of the communication tool. For commercial marketing purposes, paid publicity, branding efforts including the visual signature and a variety of promotional activities with sponsors or media will prove to be very efficient ways of communication. For corporate communication purposes, public relation activities, media relations and the web site will be considered as more appropriate communication tools. The relatively recent developments on the Web 2.0 can become very useful for both objectives depending on how it is utilized.

Each of these communication tools have their utility depending on timing, audience, or message to convey and will achieve maximum efficiency if part of an integrated communication strategy.

Strategic Media Relations By answering four basic questions about strategic media relations, this presentation will attempt to provide a broad understanding of such a powerful communication tool. Examples from Granby Zoo and some measurements of its success will complete the information. The four questions to be answered are the following: • Why do them? • What makes good news? • How to reach out to the media? • When to do media relations?

Why do Media Relations? Good media relations are of strategic importance because an institution can promote itself through paid publicity but its reputation, credibility and notoriety come from what others perceive, write or say on it. Hence, the importance of developing a good media relations strategy. There are many other good reasons for doing media relations. It increases the chances of having our message heard and can contribute efficiently to our education and conservation mission as media relations have a two-way interaction and impact from second and third parties (journalist and reader). They provide additional visibility, offer free publicity with higher value because the story is told by someone else and enhance a positive perception about our institution.


22 In a caption, it helps bank up our sympathy equity, a way to measure our reputation. In comparing reputation to a bank account, if the account is in the red or neutral and a bad luck occurs, the reputation will take a negative blow and the organisation will need to constantly fight a negative perception. If the account is way up on the positive side, a bad luck will be considered as such and, if well handled, may not affect the already positive perception about the organisation.

What Makes Good News? Storytelling, particularly with animals, is a winning combination for good media coverage. The public loves it, the journalists love it as it offers a refreshing change from the usual topics they cover. Many stories on our conservation efforts have the potential to be considered as privileged behind the scenes information that many journalists will appreciate. Such stories can include reproduction programs, i-situ and ex-situ programs, special enrichment programs, special behavioural training as well as education-related stories. Some research activities also offer good stories. Green practices are of increasing interest in a period where climate changes and green house gas effects are threatening wildlife and biodiversity. There are also special events that have an attractive power such as: the birthday party of a well-known animal, the birth of a rare species, the arrival of a new animal, the opening of a new exhibit, the first public appearance of a newborn and even the death of a flag species. Finally, fundraising events provide additional occasions to draw attention.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

How to Reach Out to the Media? There are different ways to capture media attention and each have their own value. Some news or situations will only trigger the issuance of a press release. Others will command exclusive invitations or behind-the-scenes tours. News or events of broader interest may require the organisation of a press conference or widespread invitations to all media representatives to cover a specific event. Another interesting way, particularly to speak about conservation related topics is to do a tour of key editorial personnel, ideally accompanied by an ambassador animal. This inevitably attracts interest and creates good news.

When to Do Media Relations?

Evolution of Media Relations at the Granby Zoo Five-Year Objectives In 2004, as a major modernisation project was launched, the Granby Zoo set itself the following objectives related to its notoriety and image: • Increase media attention and move from regional to national coverage • Change perception of a regional zoo to a national zoo • Evolve from being considered only as a tourist attraction to also being considered as a conservation and scientific institution • Be recognized as a model in green initiatives • And… walking the talk!

Media relations should be continuous Attracting the Media in order to kindle on-going interest. In fact, they can be scheduled to Granby Zoo took advantage of many complement commercial publicity opportunities to attract the media. and marketing which come out more First of all, the 43 million dollar modstrongly during the high season. An ernization project that went from integrated approach to manage 2004 to 2007 provided great stories these two types of communication including the largest geothermic offers good visibility year round. In construction site in Quebec for 2005 the summer or winter vacation period, and 2006, the yearly inauguration of when the political and economic buildings and exhibits, a record finanworld has somewhat slowed their cial result, the important local and pace, media representatives are regional financial and economic spinon the look-out for good, original, offs and an interesting 10% increase interesting stories and this is often an in attendance over the preceding five ideal time to promote conservation years. and research activities and spread the good messages about the great work Some behind-the-scenes visits were our institutions do. offered to journalists and some events were used specifically to draw media attention. Among these were Evaluation of the following: a) the 21 millionth visiMedia Relations tor since the opening of the Zoo, b) a new policy providing free admission Media relations can be evaluated both for elderly in June, September and quantitatively and qualitatively. Quan- October, c) the promotion of green initiatives on a yearly basis through titatively, it is relatively easy to add up press conferences held in conjuncthe number of times your messages tion with Earth Day, d) the issuing come out in either the written or elecof a printed 24-page Green Program tronic media. Quality-wise, indirect spin-offs provide a good indication summarizing all conservation and such as increasing requests from the environmental efforts and e) the media for animal-related information creation of a new logo and branding or expertise, overall increased media visuals for the Zoo. attention or again, repeated invitations to make presentations at conferences or seminars, in universities or in business-related forums.


23

October 2009 | St Louis

Evolution of Media Attention

Some Press Coverage

After five years from the initial efforts to modify the nature and frequency of media coverage as well as the perception about the Zoo, it is interesting to note that in 2009, media attention is on-going and almost daily. In fact, there is now more media attention in a month than in the whole year five years ago. The coverage by regional networks evolved to coverage by national networks and there is regular news coverage in the major daily newspapers. Finally, there is more and more interest shown by national and even international television production companies to film stories at, or about the zoo.

Managing strategically media relations has the advantage of providing good visibility for free. As usually good and interesting stories are featured, this is a great way to impact the perception about zoos and aquariums and all their conservation efforts.

Our Recent Conservation Message Opportunities As a result of its increased notoriety, there have been more opportunities to highlight the conservation and green efforts at the Zoo and even about the accredited zoo community. For instance, the director of Granby Zoo and the zoo itself are featured among 30 persons identified as Architects of Change, an international documentary series of 10 episodes (funded by UNESCO and Canadian and French television networks) aired in the fall of 2009. Another opportunity was through Novae, an e-newsletter on sustainable development and responsible practices that ran an article on Granby Zoo’s green initiatives. A French scientific television program, called Découvertes (Discovery) presented a 20 minute segment of one of its program on AZA’s SSP Programs to which Granby Zoo participates. The Year of the Frog, the Year of the Gorilla and the Year of Biodiversity are all good occasions to use to increase public awareness on various conservation efforts. A very popular e-Christmas card promoting Granby Zoo’s enrichment programs was put on YouTube and downloaded thousands of times.

Positive Benefits The positive benefits have surpassed all expectations. The budget for conservation and research has increased by 1.3 million CDN $ in the past five years. There has been increased interest from university professors and students which has resulted in new partnerships for research studies (now with five universities). There have been numerous invitations to give conferences and presentations to students at environment-related seminars and workshops. The business media and other specialized media have also shown interest and run articles on various topics. Any new event at the zoo now gets increased attention from the media. There are also more requests for information from the public. Such increased notoriety and enhanced reputation confirms our desired position as a credible scientific reference source for all animal-related topics.

Key Success Factors for Good Media Relations Based on Granby Zoo’s situation, the ideal move would be to hire a former journalist. But as this is not always feasible, here are a few key success factors to take into consideration: • Nourish good relationships with the press • Don’t try to control the media – but rather build a respectful two-way relationship • Don’t over do it with press releases, too much is as bad as not enough • Distinguish what can be covered by a press release or a press conference • Offer good interesting and coherent stories • To offer good stories, answer five questions: • Who?  To what audience is the news aimed at? • What?  Nature, originality and interest of story • When?  Select appropriate timing, avoid bad timing if possible (hot stuff in the news, election day, etc. – cannot be totally controlled) • Where?  Local media for local topic, national for broad interest • Why?  Does the story support the zoo’s vision and mission? Does it have an educational component? Can it enhance the zoo’s reputation? Can it serve its conservation efforts, etc.?


24 • Prepare quality answers to those five questions before getting in touch with the press • Be available to answer journalists’ enquiries (for the good and the bad stories) • Be well prepared with a short, clear message that includes necessary details only • Offer good visuals: • Good stories come with good visuals • Anticipate needs of journalists that cover your story • Provide them with good quality photographs or even short videos • Most large daily newspapers have their own web site that can include short news, clips or videos • Maintain good internal communication channels and provide only one entry channel for the media, preferably the Director of Communications • Limit the number of spokespersons: the Director of Communications should screen and identify the appropriate person for a given story • Ensure that internal processes include links to the Director of Communications for all newsworthy events • Be assured that the Director of Communications knows the zoo’s Code of ethics and various procedures.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Web Site

Conclusion

In this age and era of fast evolving information technologies, having a web site is not a luxury but a must. It is a very powerful tool that can be used effectively and strategically for so many purposes. It helps to pass on various messages of all nature, can be tailored for diverse audiences, holds information on the zoo as an attraction, provides information on special promotions, educational activities, conservation or research projects and results, detailed information on animals. In fact, it should be a true reference site. For more information on Granby Zoo’s programs, check out our web site at www.zoodegranby. com.

Media relations are the key to any institution’s notoriety and reputation and can influence the perception about it. Media relations should be a component of an integrated communication’s approach, if well done and if the institution walks the talk, then – Benefits may be greater than expected. Keeping ahead as new information technologies rapidly change the rules of the game is a must to avoid others making the news about us which may not necessarily be to our advantage!

Efficient Use of the Web Site Communication objectives can benefit greatly from an efficient use of the web site because it is a media per se that offers many advantages such as a complete control of its content, the possibility of inserting self-publicity videos or unique videos as well as the use of webcams. It can be updated daily. It is a very flexible medium. It allows interaction with the public through blogs or dedicated space (ex: Mon espace zoo), viral marketing (if you don’t do it, others will and it may not be to your advantage!). It is crucial to have a proactive approach with all new communication technologies as someone is bound to talk about any zoo or aquarium they have visited. It can be useful to check regularly social sites such as Facebook, YouTube, MySpace, TripAdvisor, etc. It is important not to let third parties dictate what is said about our institutions. An active management of the institution should ensure that it comes out first when search engines are in action. This gives immediate indication of your popularity and notoriety. It can also be a prudent move to protect various domains that include your name in them. Links with other friendly web sites can also prove useful and increase the outreach capacity.

The important role of zoos and aquariums must not remain the best kept secret on the planet. We have a responsibility of getting the message out with the right tools to do so. Joanne Lalumière | Granby Zoo, Canada | jlalumiere@zoodegranby.com


25

October 2009 | St Louis

Amazon and beyond Exhibit at Miami Metro Zoo Eric Stephens, Director – Miami Metrozoo & Mario Campos, AIA, ASLA, Principal – Jones and Jones Architects and Landscape Architects

A portal to conservation initiaties beyond the zoo The success of Miami Metrozoo’s Amazon and Beyond exhibit was born from a simple question “What can the zoo do to promote conservation in Latin America’s tropical forests and biodiversity hot-spots?” The ensuing dialogue produced an exhibit that provides Miami and its people, with a window to conservation initiatives in the rain forests of South and Central America. Miami’s Latin American influenced population provided the cultural connection for this exhibit while the City’s climate provided an ideal setting for simulating tropical rain forests. This presentation will illustrate how to discover and capitalize on each zoo’s unique assets to help save wild places. Amazon & beyond is the largest project at the zoo since our grand opening in 1981.  At approx. 27 acres and a price tag of $50 million, it opened to great fanfare in Miami in December of last year with now 800 new animals throughout the complex. The culmination of a true team effort by our zoo and zoological society as well as our parks department, and planned in conjunction with AZA commercial member Jones & Jones and built by AZA commercial member PCL. We have a winner.  Our fiscal year ends at the end of this month and if we have decent weather the rest of the way, we will have achieved a 33% attd increase in one year and a 15 % increase in our membership as a result of this opening.

Assisted by the minister of tourism of Ecuador and a representative of that country’s native peoples, we opened the doors to three main examples of wild animals and wild places with our focus on the cloud forests of Central America, the Amazon forest and the coastal hardwood forests of South America. The biggest departure for us (and also very exciting for us!) In terms of the types of animals that we are now able to work with are the frogs; and I am pleased to say that there are 11 separate exhibits with 15 species of frogs represented including the Panamanian golden frog in this new area of the zoo; the snakes and lizards, insects, fish and turtles that until now, we have never been able to share with our guests.  Also extremely exciting for us are our giant river otters, jaguars and our very Engaging and popular plaza area which is the site for daily shows and animal presentations as well as a large water play area that has become a must do for many families on their zoo visit. The community has come to see Amazon and rediscovered many other parts of the zoo.

An overview of habitat and exhibit design principles The ensuing dialogue produced an exhibit that provides Miami and its people, with a window to conservation initiatives in the tropical forests of South and Central America. Miami’s Latin American influenced population provided the cultural connection for this exhibit while the City’s climate provided an ideal setting for simulating these forests. We identified WWF’s Global 200 ecoregions in Latin America whose conservation would achieve the goal of saving a broad diversity. These ecoregions included those with exceptional levels of biodiversity, such as high species richness or endemism, or those with unusual ecological or evolutionary phenomena. We also looked at Conservation International’s vision and mission and their priority areas. • Vision. We imagine a healthy prosperous world in which societies are forever committed to caring for and valuing nature for the long-term benefit of people and all life on Earth.


26 • Mission. Building upon a strong foundation of science, partnership and field demonstration, CI empowers societies to responsibly and sustainably care for nature for the well-being of humanity. Design Principles • For Community: Support and ownership from local residents • Landscape Immersion: Intimate wilderness experience • Place Fidelity: Biology of Place • Cultural Resonance: Culture is site specific • Visitor as Participant: In the Story • Animals as Residents: Design for Biorealism

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Cloud Forest. Mesoamerica, a bridge between continents, reflects a rich diversity of plants and animals. It is also the home of some of America’s greatest civilizations. The experience will provide the appearance of the meeting of temperate forests and tropical under story. • Key Flora: Swamp Fern, West Indies Tree Fern, Wild Coffees, Parrot’s Flower, Epiphytes • Key Fauna: Jaguar, Hummingbirds, Howler Monkey, Snakes and Amphibians, Butterflies

Mata Atlantica. Along the southeast coast of Brazil, the Atlantic Forest once dominated the landscape, a solid forest of green sweeping across the Brazilian Highlands. The experience will represent the semi-deciduous forest, an area with pronounced seasonality, with adjoining grasslands, wet and dry. • Key Flora: Geiger Tree, Silk Floss tree, Copper pod, Shavingbrush tree, Trumpet Tree, Purple Tab • Key Fauna: Giant River Otter, Anteater, Marmosets and Butterflies, Bats, Amphibians and Insects

Thematic organization Three regions are represented at the Miami Metrozoo’s Amazon and Beyond Exhibit. Each has distinct cultural and ecological characteristics that evoke a distinct sense of place with all its cultural, geographical and biological diversity. Mesoamerica: Cloud Forest Amazonia: Flooded Forest Atlantic Forest: Mata Atlántica Goals: Innovative and exciting, Entertaining and enchanting, Relevant educational curriculum, Exhibits that captivate visitors and inspire interests. Village Plaza. A fourth area, a Village Plaza was designed for the community as a place abuzz with sounds, music and people. A place for gathering and learning, for festivals and celebrations. A place to rest under large shade trees, to relax at the end of the day, to let the children play and learn as they develop their gross motor skills • Key Elements include; Interactive Fountain, Performance Area, Food and Gift Pavilion, Contact Area Pavilion, Orientation Pavilion, Water’s Edge • Key Flora: Strangler Fig, Black Ironwood, Sapodilla. West Indian Mahogany

Eric Stephens | Miami Metrozoo, USA | EERIC@miamidade.gov

Flooded Forest. From its source in the Andes, the Amazon River runs nearly 6,500 miles to its mouth at the Atlantic, draining a sixth of the earth’s ocean runoff. The experience is marked by large trees mostly with large leaves, tall palms with bolder bromeliads and orchids. • Key Flora: Bridal Veil Tree, Brazilian Beauty leaf, Kapok Tree, White Silk Floss Tree, and Pernambuco Tree • Key Fauna: Anaconda, Crocodile, and Cotton tops, Harpy Eagle, Arawana and Arapaima

Conclusion Miami Metro Zoo capitalized on its unique assets to create an exhibit which promotes conservation in Latin America to help save wild places and forests. Miami’s Latin American influenced population provided the cultural connection for this exhibit while the City’s climate provided an ideal setting for simulating tropical rain forests. Miami Metro Zoo’s Amazon and Beyond Exhibit is empowering the local community to care for Latin American forests and to advance the community’s stewardship for the well-being of local environments.

Mario Campos | Jones & Jones, USA | MMCampos@JonesandJones.com


27

October 2009 | St Louis

New Research Insights for Conservation, Awareness, and Action Douglas Meyer – Bernuth & Williamson, Paul Boyle – AZA & Bill Mott – The Ocean Project

A research collaboration of The Ocean Therefore, with ZAMs wanting to inProject, Monterey Bay Aquarium, & spire visitors to take action on behalf National Aquarium in Baltimore, with of conservation, this initiative has aimed to: IMPACTS Research and Bernuth & • Obtain a deeper and more up-toWilliamson Consulting date baseline understanding of the public’s awareness and attitudes This paper covers: about conservation, including role • Purpose of the research initiative of ZAMs and how they are per• Methodology ceived • Key findings • Identify opportunities with specific • Implications audiences and issues – who among • Next Steps their visitors is most likely to act, and what issues are important to them? Purpose of research initiative • Track changes in awareness, attitudes, and behaviors over time in 12 markets (10 American and This initiative was born out of a feel2 Canadian) ing among a number of zoos, aquari• Collaborate with leading aquariums ums, and museums (ZAMs) in the in each of those 12 markets and United States and Canada that are share results widely among The part of The Ocean Project network Ocean Project partner network that they wanted to do more than just raise conservation awareness; they wanted to inspire conservation action among their visitors. Methodology In the late 1990s, The Ocean Project conducted public opinion research on how much Americans knew then about the oceans and ocean conservation issues. With this new round of research, the idea was not only to see how much American had learned, but also go much deeper, and wider, adding a couple of Canadian markets, as well as some preliminary baseline research in seven other countries.

We hired a firm, IMPACTS, to conduct the survey. They use an on-line, webbased methodology that uses sophisticated data analysis techniques. The validation process and large sample size ensures a confidence level of 95%. Initial data collection was conducted between August–November 2008, with more than 22,000 individuals ages 18 and older across the United States, with oversampling in 10 US and 2 Canadian markets. This survey has been a massive project in terms of sample size, and data analysis continues to this day. We are also conducting tracking surveys every six months, to measure changes and test messaging, with the first data collection from August – September 2009 with more than 4,800 individuals in the representative sample.

The survey used a variety of ways to try to better understand the public and their way of thinking about these issues. The poll used scalar variables, in which many of the questions in this survey asked respondents to provide their level of agreement with a proposition or a statement, ranging from 0 (meaning absolute disagreement) to 100 (meaning absolute agreement). For the most part, a scalar value over 60 represents a good level of agreement with a statement, while anything at or above 70 indicates strong agreement with a statement. The methodology is all online at: www. TheOceanProject.org.

Key findings The environment still not a “top-of-mind” concern Given the time the survey was taken with the economy facing serious difficulties and a presidential election, this finding is not surprising. Whenever economic concerns dominate the news, polling reflects a lessened concern about environment and other issues such as education. Compared to 10 years ago, however, climate change is the dominant environmental concern. However, climate change is seen as an issue apart, meaning that it is not generally linked to protecting or conserving nature.


28

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

The ocean does not make the list of people’s top concerns yet when prompted, the public does believe that protecting the ocean is important, and this is in keeping with greater interest in the “environmental movement” overall. A large plurality of Americans now think of themselves as an “active participant in the environmental movement” or “sympathetic to the environmental movement but not active.” Responses to this question were significantly different than 10 years ago. With more than 80% of people in these categories, there exists a solid base for environmental progress, especially given that only 7% view themselves as against the environmental movement in any degree. Activating people remains the challenge, however.

The importance of reaching youth (especially teens and “tweens” ages 12–17) During the course of this project, in addition to their survey of 22,000 adult Americans, IMPACTS undertook an effort to develop a methodology to survey youth aged 12 to 17. Surveying youth is complicated and under a variety of legal and methodology limitations, but IMPACTS was able to build a sample size large enough to have at least a moderate level of confidence.

Many of the survey questions were asked of both youths and adults, and a consistent pattern emerged. When it comes to environmental issues, the youth are much more concerned, informed, and willing to take action than adults. Moreover, the survey shows that adults are looking to their children for advice on environmental issues and actions. Clearly the youth are increasingly “influencers” in their households, a point not ignored by major corporations around the world in their marketing efforts.

Increasing belief in the power of individual actions and ZAMs are well positioned to fill this gap In a significant change from The Ocean Project national survey 10 years ago – when Americans mostly felt that the solutions to problems needed to come from business and government and that they had very little role as individuals taking action – nearly two-thirds of Americans now see themselves as having a fair or great deal of impact on solving environmental problems. Importantly, there is also a sizeable overlap between the Americans who see themselves as having an impact and Americans who are sympathetic or active in the environmental movement. Taken together, these seem to indicate a gradual “green” shift over the last decade.

Importantly, Americans expressed a high level of trust in ZAMs, and other types of independent, nonprofit organizations. Zoos, aquariums, and science museums are viewed as trusted authorities on many environmental issues. For comparison, in nearly all cases in this survey, Americans expressed a profound lack of trust in the government to deal with environmental issues. As an example, the research shows that people are concerned about the sustainable supply of “healthy” seafood. The survey responses suggest that healthy seafood is an issue where ZAMs could make a difference.

There exists a gap between “demand” and “supply” of conservation recommendations from trusted sources such as ZAMs While many ZAMs feel that they are adequately providing conservation recommendations to their visitors and the public, as a whole, the data clearly show otherwise. IMPACTS has tracked the public demand for recommendations from trusted sources about environmental topics over the past several years, along with the perceived supply of these recommendations. As you can see, a large and growing gap exists, with a significant opportunity for ZAMs:

Opportunity


29

October 2009 | St Louis

The public expects ZAMs to provide guidance in protecting the environment

Implications

In sum, here are the implications of these findings, based on feedback This is one of the most important from The Ocean Project’s national findings for ZAMs in the research advisory committee: project. Americans trust ZAMs to rec- • The public is supportive, when ommend specific behaviors or actions. prompted. Over the years, some ZAMs have • The public expects ZAMs to inform expressed concerns that advancing and guide them, offering specific conservation could hurt them at the suggestions for conservation acgate. This key finding indicates that tion (As one director of a leading the opposite is more likely true. aquarium recently stated, “We can be bold.”) While these findings clearly indicate • Consider focusing on high impact a demand or opportunity, for the audiences, especially teens and most part ZAMs are not meeting this ‘tweens demand. • Consider focusing on issues that resonate with those audiences, connecting nature conservation with People get their information climate change, and suggesting about the environment via “healthy” seafood • Embrace new technologies, esthe Internet pecially the Internet (As another director recently said, “We need to The public is now approximately five rethink our idea of ‘visitors.’”) times more likely to acquire environ• Measure success (rather than mental information through the Interlooking at “outputs” focus more on net than by visiting a ZAM. It should “outcomes and impact”) come as no surprise that Americans get their environmental information from each other and the Internet, primarily. Traditional media sources are Next steps still important, but the Internet has quickly overtaken them, and increasWith the research initiative: ing weekly. • With current funding, tracking surveys every six months into 2011 to This finding provides an opportunity help measure changes in attitudes for ZAMs to rethink and expand their and actions and test messaging definition of “visitor”, as many are • With additional funding, apply the already are doing with Web sites and research framework to gather more social media including blogs, Faceinformation on book, Twitter, etc. It also provides • youth a main avenue into reaching youth. • international markets Applying the findings: • ZAMs in the 12 markets already are reshaping programs and proposals, creating case studies For WAZA members: • Please provide feedback on this research • Let The Ocean Project know if you are interested in working to expand this type of research internationally • Join The Ocean Project network to obtain regular updates on this research and related conservation communications resources and tools • Let us know if you have other research or cases to share

Thank you This research initiative was made possible by an Environmental Literacy Grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). We would also like express thanks to Julie Packard, Executive Director, Monterey Bay Aquarium; Dave Pittenger, Executive Director, National Aquarium in Baltimore; and Chris Andrews, Chief of Public Programs, and Director of the Steinhart Aquarium, at the California Academy of Sciences, who generously allowed the use of their institutions’ public opinion data to assist the development of this national survey. Additional financial support for The Ocean Project’s ongoing research and collaborative outreach initiative is provided by The Curtis and Edith Munson Foundation and a foundation that requested anonymity. The Ocean Foundation serves as the fiscal sponsor for The Ocean Project. Douglas Meyer | Bernuth & Williamson, USA | dmeyer@bernuthconsulting.com Paul Boyle | AZA | pboyle@aza.org Bill Mott | The Ocean Project | bmott@theoceanproject.org


30

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Multi-Lingual Information: An Added Value for Zoos? Jan Willem Wijers, Amsterdam

First he presented himself: Being a Master in Industrial Design. An independent Product Developer from Holland, The Netherlands, with a lot of international experience. Having visited many zoos on all continents. Then the ‘What’, the ‘Why’, the ‘How’, and the ‘What if’ of the project were presented.

The What Foreign language information for visitors on a lightweight portable touch screen device. It will contain, in any case, an encyclopaedia-like database of all worldwide zoo and aquarium animals. Maybe even botanical information is already included in the first phase. Further basic visitor information like a map of the zoo, feeding times, special events, etc. are obvious. During the conference it became clear that this would be a good platform for the IUCN-Red List information too. The key factor is: No sound. Only text, graphs, charts and images. Also short video’s can be incorporated with subtitles or textboxes.

At the EAZA conference, in February 2009, the conclusion was that kids must have attention for the animals and not for an instrument. The information should be shaped in such a way that it is addressing the adults. One can do so by presenting simple text and factual information and nothing flashy and certainly no games etc.

The Why Important for a family event, such as the zoo, is the continuity of the group dynamics. An audio tour disturbs the group dynamics that zoos want to preserve. With an earphone each person becomes an individual. An audio tour may be good for a static environment, like a museum, with paintings, but is not suitable for a dynamic place like a zoo. We believe that this product even stimulates the importance of the group leader/teacher/parent and therewith the importance of the subject: conservation. An ignorant teacher does more damage than one might assume. In addition, visual information is remembered a lot better than audio information.

The How During the last five of years mister Wijers learned that there have been several attempts to start digital information. However in the end the projects always failed. In fact, what it comes down to is that, the projects had the wrong business models. Either the translation costs were to high, or the revenues went to the telecom companies (and not to the zoo) or the devices where to expensive. Sometimes the information was only available in the local language. The conclusion is that a single zoo cannot keep the information up to date, in various languages. However for an international group of zoos it is possible to run a foreign language database. The zoos should combine forces. The goal is to form an alliance. An international foundation, that will fill and maintain the database. The winwin is in two simple translations and the availability of all necessary information. First local language information should be translated into English and later the English information from other zoos should be translated into Local languages. The result will be 20–30 languages at the disposal of visitors.


31

October 2009 | St Louis

The What if

The unique opportunity

This device will earn money for the zoo. Money, that makes it possible to help support the necessary conservation projects.

Several years ago mister Wijers met a wealthy man that is willing to make his money available to fund the hardware and software development for such a device. So there will be no investment needed from the zoos.

The zoo information is constantly changing. New signs are expensive to make. Digital information however is up to date without constant costs for printed matter. A rental price of 10~15 ($/€) per family/group is realistic. Only €2~€3 is needed for the running cost. (On a non profit basis.) Annual subscription holders could possibly rent it for something like €5~€8 per visit. Can you imagine what kind of revenues this can generate?!

Le informazioni in vostro proprio linguaggio valgono un contributo per lo zoo. La información en su propio lenguaje vale una contribución para el parque zoológico.

Information in your own language is worth a contribution for the zoo.

A informação em sua própria língua vale a pena uma contribuição para o jardim zoológico.

信息用您自己的语言值得 对动物园的摊缴。

There is already response from sev‑ eral language zones: Spanish, Russian, Korean, American, German…

Информация в вашем собственном языке стоимость вклад для зверинца.
 Οι πληροφορίες στη γλώσσα σας αξίζουν μια συμβολή για το ζωολογικό κήπο. Informatie in uw eigen taal is een donatie voor de dierentuin waard. L’information en votre propre langage vaut une contribution pour le zoo. Informationen in Ihrer eigenen Sprache sind einen Beitrag für den Zoo wert.

Also European response from Scandinavian, Southern European, Eastern European and 9 African languages. Heartfelt interest, without promises, of a Japanese and Taiwanese zoo. Not yet French, Portuguese, English, Arabic, Turkish and Chinese are not yet represented. Jan Willem Wijers | Amsterdam, The Netherlands | jwwijers@yahoo.com


32

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

They’re Calling on You: Using Conservation Education to bring about Behaviour Change Jenny Gray & Rachel Lowry – Zoos Victoria, Australia

Abstract

Introduction

The processes threatening biodiversity across the globe are numerous and varied, yet the majority have one thing in common – humans. Zoos and Parks therefore have the potential to conserve wildlife by influencing the very people that walk through their gates each year. Research suggests that visitors are fatigued from lofty ‘you can do this at home’ style messages. They like to do things now, not later, and expect the links to be tangible. This is great news for the 21st century zoo and parks because contemporary theories emerging from the social sciences provide us with tools for designing behaviour change campaigns. This paper highlights a behaviour change model that has been successfully trialled and evaluated across Zoos Victoria since 2005. The success of this model lays down the challenge to zoos to be strategic about the conservation education models that they utilise, the audiences they target and most importantly the behaviours they select to influence.

Whenever there is an imbalance in society, be it economic, social or environmental, a great deal of hope is placed upon the role of education. Education is after all a powerful tool. In fact, Lester Brown (2008) in his latest publication draws upon data from all around the world to confirm the true value of education. Reducing fertility rates, decreasing infant mortality rates and increasing the health of entire nations can be achieved through primary school education alone. It therefore should not be too ambitious for the zoo world to assume that they can contribute to wildlife conservation by educating the captive audience that stream through their gates each and every day. Environmental education has been well established and broadly delivered in zoos and parks for the last 20 years. Yet there is little measurable proof of the effectiveness of the environmental educational programs offered by zoos and parks around the world. Threats to wildlife and wild places continue. It may be argued that zoos have succeeded in educating the public about the magnificence of animals, resulting in changing attitudes to animal welfare and the resultant demands for increased animal care.

A key challenge for zoos and parks is to deliver effective and measurable programs, which empower visitors to change their behaviours in ways that are beneficial to the environment. It is important to recognise that environmental education, and conservation education more specifically, is a process that has many broad and varied applications. Therefore, zoos and parks may not always choose the right model to deliver the outcomes desired. This paper explores a ‘Connect – Understand – Act’ approach to conservation education that has been successfully trialled within Zoos Victoria. Through 2009 Zoos Victoria embarked on a number of community conservation campaigns designed to change behaviour. The results were significant with over 94,000 people taking actions that will help the environment. The ‘Connect – Understand – Act’ model formed the basis of the campaign development and secures this model as an important and influential tool for environmental educators.


33

October 2009 | St Louis

Connect- Understand- Act: A conservation education model for all zoo visitors Many environmental education programs are developed based on an information-intensive approach to education. For decades environmental education has run on the hope that if people can understand the environmental problems and their own contribution they will adopt a suite of more sustainable behaviours and better live in balance with the natural world. This approach was a natural progression in the 80’s and 90’s, when people were less aware of environmental issues. Today, visitors to zoos and parks are aware of environmental challenges, through the wide scale media coverage of climate change and threats to biodiversity. In addition leading social scientists, such as Doug Mackenzie-Mohr (1999), have highlighted that information on its own does not change behaviours.

Concerned about the effectiveness of educational programs, postvisit teacher calls were conducted on school groups visiting the Werribee Open Range Zoo and partaking in educational programs in 2005, the results were sobering. Not one single school out of the almost 50 schools contacted had installed a nest-box or planted a native grass. Only one school had installed a frog bog, however they hadn’t followed the instructions given to ensure that the newly created habitat catered for their local endangered frog species, so its conservation value was questionable. This reality check resulted in a review of the programs offered. Zoo educators were clear that delivering programs that facilitated up- close moments with wildlife and promoted the acquisition of knowledge was not sufficient to motivate students to take action for conservation. The team aspired to develop and deliver programs aligned with the aspira-

tions of a 21st century zoo (WAZA, 2005) and were willing to rethink, redevelop and readjust their education approach in order to get there. The zoo education experience is challenging in that it should be fun, experiential, student centred and motivating. It should inform students of current, relevant issues and inspire them to take action. The experiences should be age appropriate and should cater for a variety of learning styles. A welldesigned zoo learning experience should offer opportunities for students to emotionally connect with wildlife and promote enquiry. This ambitious set of expectations led to the development of the Connect-Understand-Act conservation education model. Drawing upon contemporary learning theories and embedding behaviour change tools from behaviour change approaches such as community based social marketing the following conservation education model was designed to influence the development and delivery of conservation education programs within Zoos Victoria.

Figure 1: Zoos Victoria Connect – Understand – Act conservation education model.

1.

2.

Select threatening process

3. Identify target

audience

Identify ambassador species

Identify 6. connection opportunity (CONNECT)

Select appropriate tools

Confirm enduring understanding (UNDERSTAND)

Select target behaviour 4. (ACT)

Select appropriate tools

Select appropriate tools

5.

Figure 1: Zoos Victoria Connect – Understand - Act conservation education model.

2.1. Process 1. Select Threatening Process - This step requires educators developing a program to identify threatening processes to wildlife that can be alleviated by using education to inform and influence people’s behaviours.


34 Process

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

• Confirm enduring understanding – • As the educators at Werribee Open Identify an understanding that comRange Zoo became inspired and • Select Threatening Process – This pliments your selected threatening invigorated by the success of the step requires educators developing process and target behaviour. This is newly trialled conservation educaa program to identify threatening often an ecological understanding. tion model, a plan to trial it outside processes to wildlife that can be Sam Ham (1992) encourages the a zoo and within rural Zimbabwe alleviated by using education to development of themes as a way eventuated. The success of this inform and influence people’s beof ensuring that presenters stay program indicated that knowledge haviours. on track and avoid overwhelming and skill acquisition as well as at• Identify ambassador species – people. Themed presentations leave titude and behaviour change could Zoos have the unique ability to envisitors to zoos with a lasting thread be achieved for student learning in gage people with the animals within of information rather than a set of both Australia and Africa using the our care. Selecting a threatening facts and figures that will soon be Connect – Understand – Act conprocess that impacts an animal amforgotten. Enquiry based learning servation education model (Lowry, bassador within your zoo provides models (Murdoch, 1992) provide 2007). greater opportunities to engage methods for identifying enduring visitors with both formal and inforunderstandings. Knowing now that zoos could effecmal learning opportunities once the • Identify connection opportunitytively connect children with wildlife, program has been developed. Zoos have enormous potential teach ecological understandings and • Identify target audience – Ensure to ignite emotional connections inspire conservation action, it was that the people within your sphere between people and wildlife (Smith, decided to expand the Connect – Unof influence can influence the Weiler and Ham, 2008). Consider derstand – Act conservation educathreatening process that you have ways in which your visitors can get tion model to all zoo visitors. selected. If the students or public the opportunity to ‘connect’ with visiting your institution cannot influyour selected ambassador species ence a conservation gain for wildlife Expanding the target by employing a range of tools that market – Community by changing their behaviours, then enhance the likeness to arouse Conservation campaigns select another threatening process. emotions. This step ensures that you do not develop education programs or The Connect-Understand–Act concampaigns that simply raise awareThey’re Calling on You servation education model was used ness about conservation without to develop and trial a number of zoo providing tangible ways for people In 2008 Zoos Victoria expanded the based education programs at Werto contribute positively. Connect – Understand – Act conserribee Open Range Zoo over 2006 and vation education model when Mel• Select target behaviour – Identify 2007. Evaluations indicated that: bourne Zoo developed an informal one behaviour that you would like • Of students participating in an to influence that would alleviate the endangered species program, ‘Trees learning experience in the form of a community conservation campaign threatening process pending the Paws and Claws,’ 88% participated titled They’re Calling on You. programs success. Behaviours that in at least one action to assist with are visible are easier to change withwildlife conservation (Lowry, 2008). The ultimate aim of the They’re Call‑ in the zoo context. As are one time Through facilitating onsite consering on You mobile phone recycling behaviours rather than repetitive vation action opportunities more behaviours. It is also important at than 2027 trees were planted by stu- program is to: this stage to consider how you will dents to assist with habitat corridor • Divert mobile phones from landfill • Lessen the demand for coltan min‑ evaluate and measure the success of restoration and a study conducted ing by providing the coltan-coated the behaviour change component of by learning specialist Vin Healy capacitor in mobile phones with the program. (2006) highlighted that student a second life (achieved by forward‑ interest, satisfaction and learning ing all mobile phones to Aussie was higher than usual due to the Recycling Program for refurbish‑ tangible links to conservation. ment). • ‘Investing in Nesting,’ aimed to enhance the number of nesting sites • Raise money to support primate conservation through the sale for hollow dwelling species located of refurbished phones (funds are in urban areas. Results indicated donated to Jane Goodall Institute that more than 52 schools had Australia to support insitu con‑ erected nest boxes within their local servation and Melbourne Zoo to area, of which 15% had become support existu conservation) inhabited by local wildlife. This was an enormous increase from the zero schools that had erected nest boxes a year prior.


35

October 2009 | St Louis

The Connect – Understand –Act model guided the design and development of the community conservation campaign. • Select Threatening Process – Coltan mining which currently takes place within the Democratic Republic of Congo. Coltan is used to coat the capacitors of electronic devices such as mobile phones and although the mining is illegal, it continues. The mining cuts pathways into primate habitat exposing them to poachers. • Identify ambassador species – The Western Lowland Gorilla was identified as an ambassador species within our care. Although coltan mining in the DRC does not directly impact Western Lowland Gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), Eastern Lowland Gorilla populations (Gorilla beringei graueri) have been significantly impacted. • Identify target audience- Mobile phone users (therefore peoples from the age of twelve and up). • Select target behaviour- Donate your old mobile phone to the They’re Calling on You program at Melbourne Zoo. This donation enables the Aussie Recycling Program (ARP) to make new phones from old phones which in turn raises much needed funds for primate conservation. • Confirm enduring understanding – Everyday actions such as purchasing or disposing of a mobile phone can impact wildlife both locally and globally. • Identify connection opportunityKeeper talks were seen to provide the best opportunity to conduct story telling whilst weaving in the enduring understanding and delivering the facilitated call to action. Performance is also currently being trialled to ‘hook’ visitors to the key message. Significant media opportunities were identified.

The They’re Calling on You mobile phone recycling program has provided Melbourne Zoo with the opportunity to impact primate conservation through their visitor actions. It is therefore within our zoos best interest to ensure that we are influencing as many people to donate their old mobile phones as possible. A barrier vs. benefit analysis was conducted (see McKenzie-Mohr, 1999) to identify potential barriers that would hinder the behavioural uptake rate of visitors. To overcome these barriers postage paid mobile phone recycling satchels were provided for visitors that also acted as a prompt reminder when visitors returned home enabling them to recall the experience and call to action. The success of the They’re Calling on You program to date has confirmed that the Connect – Understand – Act model can yield positive results when utilized to design informal experiences for general zoo visitors. In the first year of the campaign the following results were achieved: • more than 16,000 phones have been donated, • more than $13,000 dollars has been raised to support primate conservation, • 122 corporations have registered to the program, committing their retired mobile fleets, • media communications have raised the profile of the program and Melbourne Zoo, • 70 schools have signed up to conduct mobile phone drives, • 26% of mobile phone recycling satchels handed out at keeper talks have been returned to date (determined by barcodes that have been placed on satchels), • Satchels taken from dispensers at the front and back exits of the zoo have had a 7% return rate (an industry standard), and • The Melbourne Zoo website has also been utilised to facilitate the call to action, allowing people to download postage free labels to send phones from home at no cost. Thousands of people have visited the campaign website.

The success of the three-month trial period at Melbourne Zoo motivated the Australian Zoos and Aquarium Association to adopt the program as a regional campaign throughout Year of the Gorilla. The regional campaign was launched in March 2009 across thirteen institutions.

Don’t Palm Us Off The second campaign was launched in 2009 and targeted the contribution of palm oil production to habitat destruction. Once again the Connect – Understand – Act conservation education model was used to develop the campaign. The ultimate aim of the Don’t Palm Us Off palm oil campaign is to: • Raise public awareness about the palm oil crisis exposing the link between food products and orangutan survival in the wild. • Change food-labelling legislation in Australia and New Zealand to mandate the labelling of palm oil on all food products. • Develop a market driver for sustainable palm-oil driven by consumer choice. The Connect – Understand –Act model guided the design and development of the community conservation campaign. • Select Threatening Process – The destruction of tropical rainforest to create palm oil farms. • Identify ambassador species – The Orangutan. • Identify target audience- All consumers. • Select target behaviour- Sign a petition calling for the mandatory labelling of palm oil on food items. • Confirm enduring understanding – Everyday actions such as purchasing food can impact wildlife both locally and globally. • Identify connection opportunityKeeper talks were seen to provide the best opportunity to conduct story telling whilst weaving in the enduring understanding and delivering the facilitated call to action. Performance is also currently being trialled to ‘hook’ visitors to the key message. Significant media opportunities were identified.


36 The campaign had an immediate and significant impact. Within days thousands of people added their names to our online petition and letters of support flooded to Melbourne Zoo. More than 70,000 signatures were collected within the first five months of the campaign and five other zoos joined our efforts. The campaign has profiled Melbourne Zoo’s position on this issue, enabling us to engage food manufacturers. Perhaps the biggest indicator of success to date has been the introduction of a Bill to The Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia titled ‘Food Standards Amendment (Truth in labelling – Palm Oil) inspired by our campaign and introduced by Senator N Xenophon, Senator B Brown and Senator B Joyce.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Whilst the decision as to whether the Bill is passed remains months away, community sampling data collected by social science student Elissa Pearson (University of South Australia) clearly indicate that the Don’t Palm us Off is raising awareness of the Palm Oil crisis. Elissa’s preliminary findings (to be published post-campaign) report the benefit of the campaign to date in generating an increase in awareness of the palm oil issue for onsite visitors, reporting an accurate awareness of 54% pre-campaign to 97% mid-campaign. These results are represented in the graph below.

Figure 2: Comparative awareness of the Palm Oil issue mid-campaign prior to pre-campaign.

An added benefit has been an increase in the perception of visitors of the importance their friends and family would place upon orang-utan conservation, reflected in the table below. Table 1: Results from question ‘which response most closely represents the view of your friends and family towards orang-utan conservation?’ (Pearson, 2009, to be published). Orangutan conservation is unimportant They are indifferent toward Orangutan conservation Orangutan conservation is important Orangutan conservation is highly important Unsure

PreDuring Campaign Campaign 3.3% 1.0% 13.3%

8.2%

45.6%

44.9%

28.9%

41.8%

8.9%

4.1%

In association with increased awareness of the palm oil issue also came an increased desire for mandatory palm oil labelling, as demonstrated by responses to the question below. Table 2: Results from question ‘at present it is not compulsory for palm oil products to be labelled, would you prefer the government to change legislation to mandate labelling of palm oil products?’ (Pearson, 2009, to be published). Yes Unsure No

PreDuring Campaign Campaign 69.6% 90.0% 25.0% 8.0% 5.4% 2.0%


37

October 2009 | St Louis

Ongoing Research into the elements for success:

How many messages are too many?

As part of the ongoing commitment to the Connect – Understand – Act conservation education model Zoos Victoria has identified a number of areas for ongoing research to ensure the effectiveness of conservation education.

Investigations into the number of target behaviour requests remain unexplored. On the one hand if too many are requested, zoo visitors may get the feeling that they are being harassed by the zoo to the point where their visit becomes less enjoyable. Furthermore, too many target behaviour requests may lead to visitors switching off, using information processing short cuts and avoid thinking too hard about requests for target behaviours (Petty & Cacioppo, 1986). On the other hand, by asking for more behaviours, zoos may not negatively affect visitors’ experiences and increase their chance of influencing visitors’ behaviour by offering them a range of behaviour options.

The link between Emotional Arousal and Understanding Zoos have focused on creating experiences that provide the ‘wow’ factor in the belief that this will create greater understanding and bias for action. Research conducted by Liam Smith of Monash University (Smith 2008) at Zoos Victoria indicated emotional arousal might change the way that messages are developed and implemented. Through an emotional and physiological assessment of the programs on offer at Zoos Victoria, it was found that the Birds of Prey show at Healesville sanctuary delivered the greatest emotional arousal. Research was conducted in to the role that emotional arousal played in the facilitation of understanding, before, during and after the Birds of Prey show. The following preliminary results will be used to develop future programs: • No relationship exists between arousal and attention paying. In fact an exciting animal encounter distracts attention from conservation messages. • Calls to action need to be realistic and new. • Recall directly after a show and on exit were the same indicating that messages were retained.

In early 2009 Zoos Victoria and Liam Smith of Monash University undertook a study into this question (Smith and Pahlow, 2009). On the days of data collection, staff at Melbourne Zoo delivered 33 presentations. Thirty of these presentations (ten different presentations each presented three times) contained behaviour requests. Some behaviours were on-site only behaviours (eg donating) while others were off-site (eg take four-minute showers and recycling your mobile

phone). All off-site behaviours also contained an on-site behaviour to act as a catalyst encouraging the off-site behaviour. At exit surveys it was found that only 10% of the visitors approached had experienced a presentation, with a higher rate of participation on weekdays than weekends. This rather humbling result would indicate that a significant effort would be required to reach every visitor. The findings to date suggest that requesting visitors to become part of the conservation fight and giving them an opportunity to do so may actually improve their zoo experience. Visitors feel empowered by being given an opportunity to support the wild counterparts of the animals they see in the zoo. When asked what the maximum number of behaviours visitors could be asked to adopt as part of their zoo visit without compromising the overall experience, there appeared to be two groups of responses. The first group is relatively normally distributed peaking around three requests. However, another group felt that numerous (>10) requests would not compromise their experience and probably saw asking visitors to undertake conservation behaviours was part of the zoo’s job.

Figure 3: Public opinion on the maximum number of behaviour requests the zoo should ask.


38

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Respondents were also asked to indicate how the number of behaviours they recalled being asked to do affected their overall zoo experience. All visitors thought that the number of requests they received did not affect their experience or made it better. In particular, donating was singled out as a behaviour that should not be requested too frequently. Other behaviours, such as recycling mobile phones, were singled out for the opposite reason, in that they should be requested more frequently. Some behaviours are likely to contribute more to the threshold than others. These results are early findings in the research investigating how many requests are too many, thus all data needs to be interpreted cautiously.

Measuring acceptance and success Authenticity and convenience (Mindbranch, 2008) are two key factors that make the Connect – Understand – Act model work when the threatening process chosen is relevant to its audience and barriers to target behaviour are removed. Action based programs should allow people to connect emotionally with wildlife and provide visitors with a fun and meaningful experience, not simply a passive learning experience.

In parallel to the research of Smith, staff at Melbourne Zoo assessed the effectiveness of the call to action campaigns delivered on site. The presentations were aligned with the Connect- Understand – Act model. An animal ambassador was identified to create the connection and the keeper presentation provided the understanding of the threatening process and the requested behaviour. A measurable, on-site action was aligned with each behaviour change requested and the response measured. While

still preliminary, this research will be used to scope future campaigns and their appeal to the visitors. It is believed that any program developed through the Connect – Understand – Act model should be tested prior to full development. Public acceptance and response to the presentations and requested actions are useful and will direct further investigation:

Table 3: Behavioural uptake rate of visitors engaging in ten target behaviours at Melbourne Zoo in 2009. Ambassador animal Tree kangaroo Platypus

Elephants Wombat

Tigers Orang-utan Gorillas

Penguins

Bear Frogs

Target Behaviour Action Donate to the Tenkile project after the presentation On site – donation box at presentation Purchase phosphate-free detergent at the next opportunity On site – Take free sample pack of phosphate-free detergent Purchase sustainable timber at the next opportunity Onsite – Take 10% Villa and Hut discount voucher Phone RACV hotline next time wildlife is seen beside the road On site – Take a mobile phone holder with RACV number on it Purchase tiger-friendly coffee at the next opportunity On site – Take a free sample of tiger-friendly coffee Sign and post a petition card lobbying Food Standards Australia to mandate that all food products containing palm oil are clearly labelled Recycle mobile phone when it is replaced On site – Take a mobile phone recycling bag

Purchase sustainably harvested seafood at the next opportunity On site – Take a sustainable seafood guide Sign a petition to free bears from slavery On site – petition signed Take four-minute showers On site – Make a pledge to take shorter showers

Visitor response 21% 14%

17% 19%

70% 78% 76% Of those that took a bag, 32% of people have gone on to donate an old phone. 58%

44% 34%


39

October 2009 | St Louis

Conclusion Zoos and parks are unique learning environments that require a tailored approach to conservation education to suit their context and purpose. Whilst there are many great ways to inspire conservation action, there are also many poor ways of doing it. The Information Intensive model has proven to be ineffective at inspiring conservation action on mass. Since 2005 Zoos Victoria has trialled an education model that combines contemporary learning theories with behaviour change tools recommended by social scientists such as Doug Mackenzie Mohr (1999).

References

• Brown, Lester. (2008). Plan B 3.0. Mobilising to save Civilization. Earth Institute. • Christoff, P. (2008). Building our own asteroid. Arena, Issue 95. www. arena.org.au/archives/Mag_Archive/ Issue_95/features95_christoff.htm • Ham, S. (1992). Environmental Inter‑ pretation. Fulcrum Publishers. • Healy. V and Anderson, P. (2006). Our Community, Our World – An Enquiry based on the VELS. Learning Matters. 11: 53–55. • Lowry, R. (2007). Werribee Open Range Zoo takes sustainability edu‑ cation to Zimbabwe. International Zoo Educators Journal. 43: 16–17. As zoos and parks design conserva• Lowry, R. (2008). Trees Paws and tion education programs for the wider Claws -Enabling students to take ac‑ group of visitors they will need to tion against climate change and the keep the messages short, sharp and biodiversity crisis. Eingana. Victorian engaging and wherever possible fun Association of Environmental Eduto experience. Selecting threatening cation. Vol 31. Number 3. processes that are relevant and easy • McKenzie-Mohr, D. (1999). Fostering for people to contribute to will be Sustainable Behaviour – An intro‑ essential and placing more emphasis duction to community- based social on facilitating actions rather than marketing. New Society Publishers. delivering information will be critical. • Murchoch, K. (1992). Integrating Whilst zoos and parks have a lot more Naturally, Dellasta. Melbourne, Austo learn about inspiring and empowtralia ISBN 1 875627 2. ering visitors to act for conservation, • Pearson. E, (2009). Melbourne Zoo it is believed that many have begun Don’t Palm us Off Preliminary Evalu‑ the journey. Through sharing differation Report, to be published. ent models and showcasing successful programs zoos and parks will be able to grow this field and expand their influence. If successful, conservation education will secure zoos and parks as cultural institutions that have a greater purpose and relevance within the 21st century than ever before.

• Petty, R. E., & Cacioppo, J. T. (1986). Communication and Persuasion: cen‑ tral and peripheral routes to attitude change. New York: Springer-Verlag. • Smith, L, Weiler, B & Ham. S. (2008). Measuring Emotion at the Zoo. International Zoo Educators Journal. 44: 27–31. • Smith, L and Pahlow, K. (2009). When does the zoo turn into a nag? Generational differences. ARAZPA Conference 2009. • WAZA (2005). World Zoo and Aquar‑ ium Conservation Strategy: Building a Future For Wildlife, WAZA Executive Office, Berne, Switzerland. Jenny Gray | Zoos Victoria, Australia | JGray@zoo.org.au Rachel Lowry | Zoos Victoria, Australia | RLowry@zoo.org.au


40

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

21st Century Zoological Organizations & Field Conservation: Considering the Parameters for Conservation Partnerships Robert A. Cook, V.M.D., M.P.A. – General Director of Living Institutions and Executive Vice President, Wildlife Conservation Society

Dr. Robert Cook is the General Director of Living Institutions and Executive Vice President of the Wildlife Conser‑ vation Society (WCS). In this role, he coordinates the operations of the five WCS New York based wildlife parks with 1,700 species at the Bronx, Queens, Prospect Park and Central Park Zoos and the New York Aquarium. In addition, he oversees the admin‑ istration of programs in Curatorial Science, Education, Exhibit Design and Global Health. He served as Chief Veterinarian and Vice President of the Wildlife Health Sciences Division (WHS) for l7 years prior to becoming the General Director.

ABSTRACT: Zoological institutions of the 21st century are challenged to broaden their mission to go beyond display and education and to have a direct and positive impact on the conservation of wildlife. In addition, government agencies are now requiring a stronger link between ex-situ and in-situ activities. For example, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service permit application for the importation of CITES I listed species must include a statement on how the activities will enhance or benefit the wild population. Also the United Kingdom’s Secretary of State’s Standards for Modern Zoo Practices note that zoos should demonstrate measurable performance in conservation, research and education. A number of zoological organizations have already moved to becoming active participants in field conservation activities. The World Zoo and Aquarium Conservation Database lists 759 field projects undertaken. The Association of Zoos and Aquariums in its 2006 Conservation Impact Report lists 824 new projects and 983 continuing projects (total 1807) which in a variety of ways, connect their members to conservation.

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) has a rich 114 year history of managing animals in zoological parks and in promoting conservation of wildlife in their native habitats. Thus it is by example, a model for the 21st Century zoological conservation organization. Over the last 30 years, the field conservation component has grown into a worldwide effort to save wildlife and wild places active in over 60 countries around the globe. During this same time, the zoological parks have grown from caring for animals at the Bronx Zoo and New York Aquarium, to include three additional zoos managed for the City of New York at the Central Park, Queens and Prospect Park Zoos. These two great mission driven components of the organization have evolved with only modest linkages between them. In 2008, WCS undertook an enterprise-wide transformational process to organize itself around its mission of saving wildlife and wild places. Three mission critical elements were identified as saving landscapes, saving species and connecting people to nature. In addition, four challenges to the mission were identified as natural resource extraction and exploitation (including the wildlife trade), sustainable development and human livelihoods, global climate change, and health and well-being. Our mission critical programs now organize their efforts with these elements and challenges in mind.


41

October 2009 | St Louis

A new enterprise-wide initiative in Species conservation was established that spans the expertise from park to field in curatorial science, field science and wildlife health. Global Priority Species and Recovery Species have been defined and incentive based management methods incorporated to foster equal investments from the mission oriented divisions. The Species Conservation efforts engage curators, field scientists and health professionals to create a balanced effort to save species, be they in a zoological park, in one of the WCS landscapes, or in other situations such as recovery operations in the range countries in which we work. Thus, everything we do in our parks and in the field is unified under a conservation mission that spans the enterprise. A number of zoological organizations around the world have established significant links to field conservation efforts either through grant contributions or through direct investments in field capacity or both. In 1999, WCS created the Congo Gorilla Forest exhibit, an innovative series of immersion exhibits that describe the efforts of field conservation staff in that region. Guests pay to enter and after viewing the exhibits, they choose how their entry fee will be directed. Since 1999, approximately $10 million dollars has been generated by exhibit entry fees to support the work of WCS Africa Programs. In 2003, Zoo Zurich (ZZ) and WCS established an innovative partnership. ZZ opened a spectacular Masoala exhibit which generates funds for Madagascar conservation through the restaurant, shops and donations. The exhibit also stimulates tourism, which has both direct and indirect positive impacts on the local economy and human livelihoods. In addition, research is supported which promotes conservation activities in Masoala National Park and the surrounding area. ZZ also has plans underway to develop a new exhibit, the Kaeng Krachen Elephant Park. Again in partnership with WCS, the exhibit will both directly and indirectly support the conservation work on the ground in Thailand at the Kaeng Krachen National Park. A major emphasis of the field studies will be in mitigating human elephant conflict.

The Zoological Society of San Diego and the St. Louis Zoological Society are but two organizations amongst many zoos and aquariums in the United States that have established field conservation efforts that enhance their work beyond their zoological parks. The St. Louis Zoo is home to the Madagascar Fauna Group, a consortium of 17 zoos and a botanical garden that work together through contributions by the members to preserve the plants and animals of Madagascar. To save the California condor, the Zoological Society of San Diego (ZSSD) partnered with the Los Angeles Zoo, the Portland Zoo and the Peregrine fund to work with federal, state and local agencies with great success. Worldwide there are many additional examples of zoological organizations matching their in-park wildlife care to the conservation of species in the wild. This wide array of initiatives is laudable and demonstrates the forward movement of our profession to define ourselves to include conservation in our missions. However, the initiatives lack cohesion and in many cases, have few required criteria for engagement and are without measurements of success. As Renaud Fulconis noted in the WAZA News of March 2008, “the lack of coordination between the conservation organizations is an obvious fact. Too many of us have an exaggerated sense of ‘property and ownership’ and simply do not communicate the details of the work we are doing. For this reason, the same type of project is sometimes developed.” As a profession, we have taken significant steps to broaden our conservation commitment to include in-situ activities. However, in a majority of cases these efforts are projects and not programs, they are nascent endeavors that may lack coordination between institutions and most importantly, fail to ensure long-term sustainability for successful conservation outcomes. It is time to consider providing a mechanism for collaboration that supports those who have established the in-situ infrastructure and provides those entering into

in-situ conservation the mechanisms to engage, brand and make a sustainable contribution within their means. It may also be the time when the expertise of species management in zoological organizations becomes recognized as a critical required component for field conservation efforts challenged to manage small populations of threatened or endangered species in limited wild habitats. Developing a model for conservation collaboration envisions a zoological organization-driven effort that supports our member institutions’ desires to perform field conservation and ensures the long-term viability of species in the wild. It should provide a framework for those institutions just starting out to contribute to more established sustainable conservation efforts by other member zoological institutions that have already invested in the long-term, on-the-ground infrastructure in the region. It should provide mechanisms to participate and outline benefits to participant organizations, branding each participant zoological park as a conservation investor in their local community with different returns on investment based upon the level of participation.

Robert A. Cook | WCS, New York, USA | rcook@wcs.com


42

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Building Capacity for Conservation in Bukit Tigapuluh, Sumatra Susan Hunt – Chief Executive Officer, Perth Zoo

The work occurring at Bukit Tigapuluh wild. This activity is continuing to is a clear example of zoos as active grow with additional work commencconservation partners with NGOs ing this year with woylies, yellow beland with governments. I understand lied frog and Western Ground Parrot. that many of you undertake this sort of work internationally, but it is the However as Perth Zoo CEO I have first time that zoo-NGO collaboraPerth Zoo has been working at Bukit been aware that this conservation tion has occurred to such an extent in effort has not been integrated into Tigapuluh for over three years. Our the Australasian region. For the first work started with our participation our programs with exotic animals. time we have 5 major zoos, Perth Zoo, While I had several staff active in in the release program for Sumatran Australia Zoo, Auckland Zoo, Dreamorangutan into Bukit Tigapuluh. This conservation in SE Asia and Africa in world and Adelaide Zoo actively program is an Indonesian Governtheir own time, Perth Zoo’s contribusupporting conservation programs ment joint program with the Franktion was predominantly an education furt Zoological Society (FZS). The aim in Bukit Tigapuluh in Sumatra. This one, rather than harnessing our staff is through a variety of mechanisms – of the program is to re-introduce Suexpertise as an active contributor to through fundraising; zoo interpretamatran orangutan into an area which in-situ conservation programs for non the species has been extinct for over tion, public awareness; active staff Australian species. 150 years. Since our initial involveparticipation; and now advocacy ment, through partnering and workto conserve this area for the future. The Australian context offers many ing with others, Perth Zoo and several There are also indications of future in- opportunities for greater involvement other Australasian zoos are active in volvement of other major Australian in Sumatran wildlife conservation. Bukit Tigapuluh habitat protection zoos – as the benefit and outcomes There is intense interest and commitof an integrated approach to in-situ programs in support to wildlife surment in Australia to South East Asian veys, community education programs, conservation are realised. species, from our zoo visitors, who local employment, research activities enjoy the Sumatran Tiger, the SumatPerth Zoo has been active for some and the construction of facilities to ran Orangutan*, Gibbon species and support conservation. Increasingly, years in Australian native species con- Asian elephant. Additionally intertoo, zoos, NGOs and other partners servation and some of you may have nally within the Zoo community there are involved politically, with lobbying heard me and predecessor CEOs of is a strong commitment to manage and actively negotiating to protect Perth Zoo speak of this. In our breed our ex-situ combined species’ populathe Bukit Tigapuluh ecosystem. for release programs for Western tions sustainably with an increasing Australian species we have had good imperative to more actively link our success, with now over 2000 Western ex-situ exhibited animals with in-situ Australian native animals released conservation. from Perth Zoo programs into the

The purpose of this paper is to detail the capacity building and work of NGOs, zoos and partners being undertaken in Bukit Tigapuluh, Sumatra, Indonesia.

* I would emphasize that the priority managed orangutan species in the Australasian region and in the re-introduction program to which I refer in this paper is Sumatran orangutan, not Bornean. Even in zoo circles there is confusion between the context and conservation approach between Sumatran and Bornean orangutan. There are approximately 6,600 Sumatran orangutan left in the wild and the current rate of loss is approximately 1,000 per year. Unfortunately 80% of the remaining Sumatran orangutan habitat is covered by timber concessions in the troubled province of Aceh. The situation is extremely different from that in Borneo with many animals held in sanctuaries and little suitable habitat for reintroduction. In Sumatra the expert advice is that there is greater capacity for animals for the re-introduction program. Since 1970, 27 Sumatran orangutans have been born at Perth Zoo - and the colony currently comprises ten females and four males as one of the largest captive breeding group in the World.


43

October 2009 | St Louis

As a starting point in describing the habitat protection and conservation efforts at Bukit Tigapuluh I acknowledge the ground breaking work of the FZS in its ongoing work on the ground in Sumatra. Another major contributor is the NGO the Australian Orangutan Project (AOP) in its fundraising and advocacy work. (I would point out that AOP is a WAZA supported program – so zoos can be involved in support for Bukit Tigapuluh by funding support to AOP.) The third major party to be acknowledged is the Republic of Indonesia’s Ministry of Forestry and Biodiversity Protection. All work is done in partnership with the Ministry and its participation and endorsement are central to the conservation work in Bukit Tigapuluh. Sumatra is a major island in Indonesia and Indonesia is one of Australia’s closest neighbour states, with around 240 million people. It is the World’s 3rd largest democracy. Its neighbours to the north are Malaysia and Singapore, to the west Papua New Guinea and to the south, Australia. Indonesia’s capital Jakarta is closer to Perth and to Perth Zoo, than the Australian cities of Sydney, Melbourne or Canberra. In many ways Western Australians look to Asia as a basis for our economic development and it is also a natural place to partner on wildlife conservation. The Bukit Tigapuluh National Park and its surrounds have rich biodiversity. The Park is almost 150 000 hectares – with a boundary length of over 330 kms. It is a wilderness area, the terrain is rough and locations are remote. Two indigenous groups still live in the forest living sustainably off its produce. More than 1500 types of flora are found within the Park. There are approximately 59 types of mammals in the Park. 193 species of birds (or one-third of the species of birds in Sumatra); a 1993 study recorded 97 species of fish from 52 genera and 25 families in the waters around

Bukit Tigapuluh. There are also nine species of primates recorded in the immediate area. There are 5 mammals species that are threatened by extinction and have protected status; the habitat is home to a variety of endangered wildlife species endemic to Sumatra which serve as umbrella or flagship species protected by Indonesian law, CITES and IUCN. This includes Sumatran tiger (thought to be around 40 animals) and the Sumatran elephant (perhaps up to 120) and now as a result of the re-introduction program commenced around 7 years ago Sumatran orangutan, the world’s most threatened Great Ape has been added to the mix (Resource Base Inventory, Bukit Tigapuluh National Park and Frankfurt Zoological Society, 2009; 57-74). Wildlife is also rich in the area around the National Park of Bukit Tigapuluh. These areas do not yet have protected status. Indeed as we understand more about the area through wildlife surveys and research as a result of increased conservation work we are finding that the so-called Park buffer zone has a greater known number of several key species (particularly Sumatran elephant and the Sumatran tiger) than the protected National Park. As a consequence the battle to save the surrounding areas of the Park has urgently arisen: to maintain wildlife habitat; enable the movement of species such as elephant and tiger; and to minimise human animal conflict. It has been the efforts of the FZS Director Indonesian Programs, Dr Peter Pratje that has raised the profile of the importance of the conservation of Bukit Tigapuluh. In addition to the re-introduction program, he is on the ground managing approximately 70 staff in the region in wildlife protection patrols, community education and research. This now includes the programs funded by Australian partner zoos.

108 orangutans have now been ‘soft released’ into the Bukit Tigapuluh ecosystem. To date there have been three births from released orangutan and these animals are living wild with their mothers at Bukit Tigapuluh. Given that orangutans have the longest inter-birth interval of any species at around 8 years before natural dispersal; this is a long term program. The project’s intent is to create a viable back-up wild population to the only remaining in-situ wild populations in Aceh Province in North Sumatra. All animals bar one, the orangutan from Perth Zoo ‘Temara’, are ex-pet or orphaned orangutans previously held illegally and confiscated by the Indonesian Government. All animals confiscated are placed in the SOCP program for repatriation and care and for re-introduction into Bukit Tigapuluh. One of the keys to the success of the re-introduction program has been the armed and trained wildlife protection units which patrol Bukit Tigapuluh. Their mandate is wildlife crime prevention, monitoring forest fire, collecting intelligence and acting on illegal logging, palm oil farming, animal poaching and also undertaking wildlife surveys. This is where the collaboration of zoos has come in. Along with and initiated through the AOP, Humane Society International, Australia Zoo, Dreamworld, Perth Zoo and Auckland Zoo have now funded 8 wildlife protection units in Bukit Tigapuluh. The men are all recruited from the local area. A training centre for the wildlife protection units is soon to be constructed funded by Australia Zoo, further consolidating the program’s role as a major local employer and in protecting wildlife and habitat.


44 While most of the staff who work with the orangutans preparing them to be released are local Sumatrans, Perth and Auckland zoos are also increasingly active. This has been in those tasks that come easily to modern zoos: animal enrichment, husbandry and animal nutrition. The intensive captive management approach is necessary in most instances due to the traumatic events leading to the animals’ captivity, such as physical abuse, the death of their mothers or long-term captivity as a family pet, as a circus animal, or a company mascot. Expert keeping zoo staff make a big difference in enrichment, training and husbandry. Zoo staff who visit Bukit Tigapuluh up to three times per year help to and assist with training local staff to build the animals’ physical health and strength in addition to developing social skills; forest skills, which these primates need to learn and would have learnt from their mothers in a natural environment. It builds the animals’ mental and physical health – skills necessary for survival in the wild. In January this year Perth Zoo formalized its involvement and investment at Bukit Tigapuluh with the construction of a sanctuary funded by the Zoo. It was opened on the outskirts of the National Park in January 2009. Integrated with the FZS funded program Perth Zoo’s sanctuary provides the additional levels of husbandry support necessary for particularly damaged orangutan with the aim of their introduction or their offspring’s’ introduction into the wild. Additionally, Perth Zoo has funded wildlife surveys for Sumatran elephants and a specialist study on the mitigation of elephant human contact has also commenced.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

The Zoo has also funded construction of infrastructure including Wildlife Protection Posts on the outskirts of the National Park to maintain a clear physical presence. Funds are also being provided to enable pursuit of prosecutions for illegal clearing, poaching or illegal burning of the forest. Wildlife Education Units have also been established with funding through the European Union and Perth Zoo. Perth Zoo’s orangutan Temara was introduced into Bukit Tigapuluh as a part of the orangutan reintroduction program in November 2006. She was born at Perth Zoo and is a granddaughter of a wild caught orangutan which given to the Zoo as a gift many years previously. Temara now lives successfully in the wild and is monitored daily and her movements, food intake and behaviour are been closely documented to inform possible future releases. Further papers and publications on this release are available elsewhere. So what has Temara’s release – the first ever Zoo-born Sumatran orangutan release meant for capacity building for conservation at Bukit Tigapuluh? Certainly there was media interest and interestingly there was a strong diplomatic flavor to the media coverage. As a Western Australian Government zoo and a statutory authority Temara’s release was a Government to Government event. In addition to the intense and detailed work necessary to return her to the wild, she has clearly been an ambassador and public symbol of the need to protect Bukit Tigapuluh. There have also been diplomatic benefits. The Australian Ambassador to Indonesia confirmed with me that in his many years as Ambassador to Indonesia Temara’s repatriation was the most positive media he had ever seen about Australia in Indonesia. In terms of the broader role of zoos, the Direc-

tor General of the Indonesian Government Ministry of Forestry said that he was impressed that a Western Zoo was giving back to his country, rather than making representation to take animals, which was the most common request received from Western zoos. Temara and the work associated with her were important signals that zoos were moving beyond their borders into the broader business of wildlife conservation and protecting ecosystems. As many may be aware it has not been all smooth sailing in terms of the protection of Bukit Tigapuluh. Large areas surrounding the National Park have been subject to logging concessions and as a result subject to illegal burning and clearing of land for palm oil plantings. Wildlife is not aware of the boundaries of logging concessions or National Parks and large numbers of threatened wildlife live in the unprotected logging concession areas. Through the work of wildlife surveys and the work of partners we can see that particularly the Dalek Esa Concession adjoining the protected areas has the most intense concentration of recorded wildlife. During 2009 this area has been the subject of intense lobbying and publicity to protect these areas, as the Singapore based pulp and paper company, Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) and its subsidiary and associated companies look to access the concession areas for clear fell logging. Led by the politically active local NGO, the Australian Orangutan Project, Australia and New Zealand zoos and other NGOs joined forces to defend Bukit Tigapuluh. This was followed up by international NGOs in a global push to protect the area.


45

October 2009 | St Louis

As a Government zoo and given diplomatic sensitivities in working internationally Perth Zoo was not able to ‘go public’ against activities occurring in Indonesia. This may be seen as an impediment; however there are also great benefits of working within the Government framework. In 2007 Perth Zoo, as an agent of the Government of Western Australia, reached and signed off a formal agreement with the Indonesian Government on joint initiatives for conservation in Sumatra and Java. This year a higher level agreement is under development which is more prescriptive about the levels of activities and protected areas for conservation and this is only possible because of the extra status and importance given to Government to Government agreements. Additionally as a Chief Executive of an Australian Government statutory body this year I was able to meet with the Governor of Jambi Province (the responsible Sumatran regional government) who has now pledged to protect Bukit Tigapuluh and its landscape. As a result of issues raised at the meeting the Governor has now also approved that Bukit Tigapuluh wildlife protection units will assume management responsibilities for significant roads around the protected areas. This is a promising further step to ensure increased protection and less encroachment of illegal land clearing and farming at Bukit Tigapuluh. In July 2009 a Government to Government agreement between Perth Zoo on behalf of the Government of Western Australia with the local government, Jabung Barat Buparti was also signed off. This agreement

protects the area in which the Zoo Sanctuary is located and agrees to further collaboration on conservation and community programs in the area. This will include inclusion of REDD schemes and carbon credit programs, as well exploring eco-tourism opportunities for the Bukit Tigapuluh ecosystem. The intent of these agreements is to build confidence about alternative land-use which is consistent with the conservation of the ecosystem and which also support the economic and future development aspirations of the community. As a Government zoo, we may not be able to publicly advocate using the media to protect wildlife and ecosystems; however using the influence and strength of government processes there have been significant opportunities to build partnerships and relationships to protect Bukit Tigapuluh. While this more political Government to Government diplomatic path may not be as yet a common role for zoos and zoo Directors, in order for zoos to be active agents for conservation of wildlife and ecosystems it is a path worth travelling.

Bukit Tigapuluh has been an opportunity for the combined capacity of NGOs and zoos – Government and private – to make an impact and build conservation action in the wild. With this combined activity and integration of skills, expertise, resources and commitment we jointly hope that the ecosystem of Bukit Tigapuluh may be conserved for the future.

Susan Hunt | Perth Zoo, Australia | susan.hunt@perthzoo.wa.gov.au


46

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

The Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute R. Eric Miller – Sr. VP of Zoological Operations Saint Louis Zoo

The Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute was founded in 2004. It was designed to consolidate and focus the Saint Louis Zoo’s conservation activities at that time, and with additional funding, it tripled their scope. It was built on the Zoo’s past conservation history and expanded into additional, focused areas of conservation need that were identified by the Zoo’s curators, veterinarians and staff. As each area of conservation focus (called a “Conservation Center”) was identified, it was determined that each would address: • Wildlife Management and Recovery • Wildlife protection • Breeding for reintroductions • Nutritional, reproductive, health and behavior studies • Conservation Science • Field research, biomedical surveys • Field Research for Conservation programs • Human Dimension • Education for local community and in St. Louis • Ecotourism • Cultural Anthropology • Training in sciences and natural resource management

Early on, it was decided to emphasize cooperation and collaboration, within our staff, with the local communities in St. Louis and in our field sties, and with other conservation institutions. The end result has been over 180 partners that include zoos, governmental conservation agencies, nongovernmental conservation agencies, and universities.

• Center for MesoAmerican Conservation, Bosawas (Nicaragua) – Dr. Cheryl Asa • Center for Avian Health in the Galapagos Islands – Drs. Patty Parker and Eric Miller • Center for Conservation in the Horn of Africa (featuring Grevy’s zebras) – Martha Fischer • Center for Conservation in Madagascar – Ingrid Porton and Dr. Randy For the first four years, the WildJunge Care Institute was funded with • Ron Goellner Center for Hellbender $750,000/year from the Saint Louis conservation – Jeff Ettling and Mark Zoo Friends’ Association (ZFA) and Wanner $350,000/year from the proceeds of • Center for American Burying Beetle a Conservation Carrousel. Each of Conservation – Bob Merz and Ed those same four years, the ZFA also Spevak contributed $4,000,000/year (for • Center for Sahelo-Saharan Consera total of $16,000,000) to create an vation – Bill Houston endowment for future support of the • Center for Near Eastern Viper ConWildCare Institute. With funds from servation – Jeff Ettling donors, other zoos in joint programs • Center for Horned Guan Conservaand grants we have been able to tion – Michael Macek obtain matching funds in at the rate • Center for Cheetah Conservation – of 1:1, thus effectively doubling our fiSteve Bircher nancial contributions to conservation. • Center for Conservation n Forest Park – Alice Seyfried Twelve “Conservation Centers” • Center for Humboldt Penguin Conwere identified (later one, Bosawas, servation at Punta San Juan, Peru – would phase out when our commitMichael Macek. ments were fulfilled, and a Center for Conservation in Forest Park, our local setting was selected to replace a commitment to Papua New Guinea). Following is the list of the Conservation Centers and their Zoo-based Directors, and more information on each can be obtained at www.wildcareinstitute.org (or at the Saint Louis Zoo web site, www.stlzoo.org).


47

October 2009 | St Louis

Additional ongoing contributions for conservation have been made for elephants, great apes, and amphibians. One interesting aspect of this approach has been the identification of endangered species not often focused on, e.g., hellbenders, American burying beetles and Near Eastern vipers. Although not considered “charismatic megavertebrates,” the response has been overwhelming, nearly $100,000 has been donated for conserving hellbenders and another $125,000 for conserving American burying beetles. Another factor of note is that although the programs are often focused on species, the conservation impact is frequently on an ecosystem level. An example is the focus on Grevy’s zebras in northern Kenya. Agreements which have set aside a network of communal lands for conservation, have resulted in ongoing recovery of the elephants and other plants and animals of the whole ecosystem. A key to making WildCare Institute work is integrating its activities with all aspects of the Zoo’s operation and communicating its efforts to public.

As noted earlier, one of its foremost principles of the WildCare Institute has been collaboration and to fulfill that aim, we have become the “home” for the Madagascar Fauna Group (MFG – www.savethelemur.org) and the Treasurer of the Sahara Conservation Fund (SCF – www.saharaconservation.org). Both groups are international consortiums of zoos and other institutions whose combined efforts are much greater than any of the individual institutional contribution. Additionally, if another zoo or other conservation organization wishes to make s “small” contribution, they get more for their donation as they know that it is integrated into larger, ongoing program. Another tenet of collaboration has been a strong commitment to in-country capacity building, working to ensure the programs can be administered by the local populations.

It is critical that the future of zoos includes animal care and conservation both inside and outside of our fences – “from fence to field.” The Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute is one attempt to use resources and collaboration to address conservation needs both in our local community and in focused conservation programs around the world.

R. Eric Miller | Saint Louis Zoo, USA | REMiller@stlzoo.org


48

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

International Elephant Foundation: Conservation of elephants around the world Martha Fischer – Director, International Elephant Foundation Board of Directors

Abstract

Proceedings

The International Elephant Foundation (IEF) is a non-profit organization formed in 1998 to promote the conservation of African and Asian elephants through habitat protection, scientific investigation, education and improvements in zoo elephant care. Since its inception, IEF and its contributing supporters have contributed over $1.3 million to elephant conservation around the world. This paper will highlight the critical support that the international zoo community is providing to in situ and ex situ elephant conservation, with specific reference to its ongoing conservation partnerships in Sumatra and Kenya and its supported research programs related to Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus.

Every day someone sees or perhaps touches an elephant and gains a greater understanding of the animal he or she has known only from picture books and video. Every day young and old alike marvel at an elephant’s strength and agility, its intelligence and personality, and its ability to make you gasp and laugh. Every day the work to save elephant habitat helps in conserving many other kinds of wildlife. The popular appeal of elephants is so great that attention and efforts garnered to save this flagship species benefits many endangered animals. The International Elephant Foundation (IEF) is dedicated to saving African and Asian Elephants by providing funds and scientific expertise to support elephant research and conservation programs worldwide. IEF is a non-profit organization formed in 1998 to promote the conservation of African and Asian elephants through habitat protection, scientific investigation, education and improvements in zoo elephant care. Its mission is to support and operate elephant conservation and education programs both in managed facilities and in the wild, with emphasis on management, protection and scientific research.

Since its inception in 1998, IEF and its contributing supporters have generated more than 1.5 million dollars to 67 different in situ and ex situ elephant research and conservation projects and programs around the world. More than 91% of funds raised by IEF goes directly into elephant conservation and research programs. IEF’s Board of Directors are all affiliated with elephant programs at a variety of international organizations. The Directors contribute their time, expertise and funds and receive no compensation for time spent on IEF business. In September of 2004, IEF and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to work together to conserve elephants. This memorandum means that individual AZA zoos no longer have to develop conservation projects from “scratch” but can join into partnerships with other zoos and elephant care organizations and support established and ongoing projects. Institutions that provide general funds to IEF are considered as supporters of all of IEF’s projects and programs. This partnership between IEF and AZA has made it possible for zoos to pool their resources together to support significant conservation projects in Africa and Asia. IEF is working around the world to conserve elephants. Below are some of the key projects and activities supported by IEF:


49

October 2009 | St Louis

Conservation Response Units, Sumatra The long-term conservation of the elephant in Sumatra requires that elephants and people co-exist with minimal conflict, otherwise demands for the removal of elephants will be politically difficult to ignore, resulting ultimately in the depletion of elephant populations on the island. The Conservation Response Unit (CRU) concept is founded on the belief that diversity is only secure when diverse conservation strategies are employed. The CRU model utilizes once neglected captive elephants and their mahouts for direct field based conservation interventions to support the conservation of wild elephants and their habitat, and achieve positive outcomes for both elephants and people. By creating this link, and ensuring that these elephants are seen as an important resource and doing positive deeds, it is expected that local communities, decision-makers and other stakeholders will recognize their contribution and hopefully focus greater attention on protecting Sumatran elephants, in the wild and in captivity. The CRU teams are composed of 14 captive elephants from two ECCs (Aceh and Seblat) and 14 of their mahouts, 14 government forest rangers, and 3 FFI conservation officers spread over three CRU posts placed in targeted working areas. The CRU project has four main objectives: • 1. mitigating human-elephant conflict; • 2. reducing wildlife crime activities in the important elephant habitat through forest patrol and monitoring; • 3. raising awareness among local people of the importance of conserving elephants and their habitat; • 4. establishing community-based ecotourism to ensure long-term CRU financial sustainability.

Captive elephants play an important role by providing transportation during forest monitoring patrol activities, as a tool for gaining local community interest during awareness events, and driving away crop raiding wild elephants should conflict incidents arise. Mahouts, as part of the CRU team, not only take care of the elephants but are involved in all CRU activities and have gained training in wildlife observation techniques and basic use of navigation devices and mapping. Most of the CRU team members have little educational background, yet through a series of capacity building activities have been trained in assessing and selecting priority areas for CRU activities and field patrols, operating hand held GPS units, filling in standardized data-sheets for forest patrolling and conducting HEC assessments.

In 2004 the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT) was established by communities and other stakeholders who recognized a need for an umbrella organization that would assist communities to use biodiversity conservation and improved environmental management as a means of improving and diversifying livelihoods. The role of NRT is to develop the capacity and self-sufficiency of its constituent community organizations in biodiversity conservation, natural resource management and natural resourcebased enterprises. As neighboring communities partner together in NRT and as the total land devoted to biodiversity conservation in northern Kenya is expanded, migratory corridors are being re-established and migratory species, such as the elephant, are greatly benefiting.

The issue of instability remains the single biggest pressure on conservation efforts in this region. In the last six years, poaching and other security-related incidents in northAnti-Poaching Team, Kenya ern Kenya have decreased largely as a result of the development of NRT In Kenya, the majority of the wildlife and its conservancies, as well as the exists outside of the country’s govstrong collaboration between NRT ernment protected areas and wildlife communities. However, poaching still numbers continue to decline. If this remains a threat in this region, due to trend continues unchecked the result the large number of illegal firearms will be fragmented, isolated remin the hands of local people, and relanant populations in only a handful of tive proximity to instable countries protected national parks and reserves, on the northern and eastern borders and the potential for extinction of of Kenya. There is an urgent need some species in the wild. to increase capacity for the current anti-poaching and wildlife monitorThe African elephant (Loxodonta ing network in order to maintain and africana) is one such threatened spefurther reduce poaching and other cies that is at risk of further decline related issues for the people and for outside of protected areas. The longelephants and other wildlife in this term survival of elephants in Kenya is vast area. thus inextricably linked to the support of local communities that share the IEF and NRT, with support from land with this species. Involving local the United States Fish and Wildlife communities in the ongoing work to Service, have partnered to develop protect and monitor elephants and a Joint Conservancy Anti-Poaching raising awareness of the benefits of Team that will most certainly greatly elephant conservation are critical enhance the wildlife protection and prerequisites for success. monitoring in the region, first and foremost, by deterring incidents of poaching from occurring and, when unfortunate incidents of poaching do arise within NRT communities, by providing a dedicated team of skilled anti-poaching officers immediately available to respond to and resolve these issues.


50

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Conservation along Waterways, Uganda

Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpes Virus Research

The Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP) in Uganda is a Biosphere Reserve and is inhabited by people and wildlife. It is bordered on its western boundary by Lake Edward. The southern sector of QENP forms the largest and most significant connection to the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Parc National des Virunga and provides a corridor for elephants and other wildlife.

Juvenile elephants may be affected by many conditions that can impact overall health and survivability, including Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpes Virus (EEHV). IEF is supporting EEHV research through annual core support of operations of the National Elephant Herpes Lab based at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, as well as through support of various EEHV research projects seeking to increase the knowledge about EEHV and further develop treatment of it. IEF hosts an EEHV workshop annually to convene EEHV and human herpes researchers together with elephant veterinarians and managers to further the knowledge and treatment of EEHV.

There are 11 fishing villages all of which connect to the region’s main roads that pass straight through QENP. With legal access across the park and now improved communications (mobile phones), poachers are able to monitor ranger movements along the roads and in their ranger posts. The Waterways project has reduced poaching capabilities (policing of the bushmeat trade, ivory trafficking and illegal fishing) in the Southern Queen Elizabeth Conservation Area and is protecting wildlife and their habitats through facilitating water borne law enforcement, research and community conservation. The installation of ranger boat stations and the use of boats in QENP has had an enormous impact on the ability of law enforcement to reverse QENP’s poaching problem. Rangers now have the ability to be deployed by boat eliminating long driving distances. Rangers can also be deployed anywhere along the shore line, silently and without detection. In addition many poachers and wildlife traffickers are thought to be moving dried meat and animals completely unchallenged through the waterways where they then liaise with vehicles. Rangers in boats have decreased this illegal activity forcing poachers to travel the lengthy and hazardous land route. The Waterways project has initiated a ‘marine operations’ capacity building program, providing the means by which wildlife monitoring and research can take place, and has initiated ‘Lake Rescue’ as a new community conservation program.

Granting Program In addition to its focal field programs and research projects described above, IEF manages a small granting program that receives proposals from elephant conservationists and researchers once per year. Through this program, projects and programs are funded around the world and since its inception in 1998, IEF and its contributing supporters have generated more than 1.5 million dollars to 67 different in situ and ex situ elephant research and conservation projects and programs.

Husbandry Resource Guide IEF has taken a lead role in advancing the quality of care of elephants in human care by compiling and publishing the Elephant Husbandry Resource Guide which reflects the best practices and accepted industry standards across a wide spectrum of management styles and facilities. This Guide was compiled by a broad and diverse team of elephant experts including keepers, veterinarians, researchers, reproductive specialists and behaviorists, and has been made available to every known elephant care facility in the world. To further its goal of building capacity for elephant care worldwide, IEF provides a scholarship annually to one elephant professional to support his/her participation in the AZA Principles of Elephant Management course. Of course, none of this would be possible without the generous support of people and organizations like yours that have a concern for the future of elephants.

Martha Fischer | International Elephant Foundation, Saint Louis Zoo, USA | Fischer@stlzoo.org


51

October 2009 | St Louis

Grevy’s Zebra Trust: Conservation of Grevy’s zebra in Kenya and Ethiopia Martha Fischer – Saint Louis Zoo

Abstract

Proceedings

In the last four decades, Grevy’s Zebras have undergone a catastrophic decline in both abundance and distribution. The Grevy’s Zebra Trust focuses on the conservation of Grevy’s Zebra and its semi-arid ecosystem in the community rangelands of Kenya and Ethiopia. Its activities center on: employment of communities to protect/monitor the species; support of education for pastoral children; community awareness; partnering on research projects that link directly to management; and rangeland rehabilitation through planned livestock grazing. This paper will highlight the critical support that the international zoo community has provided to Grevy’s Zebra conservation in the last five years.

The largest of all wild equids, the Grevy’s Zebra (Equus grevyi), is now considered endangered across its range, with less than 150 in Ethiopia and the remainder, perhaps 2400, in northern Kenya. Grevy’s Zebras are distinguished from other zebras by the intricate pattern of narrow black and white stripes on their skins. Unfortunately, this same trait made Grevy’s Zebra highly prized by trophy hunters in the past; thankfully, such trophy hunting has been outlawed for decades, but illegal poaching for food and medicinal purposes has continued to drive this species towards the precipice of extinction. The process has been accelerated by critical range reduction and competition over scarce resources accompanied by an unprecedented influx of humans and their domestic livestock. In addition, there has been a significant, very recent decline in the species in northern Kenya due to disease and drought. These factors have combined to produce a devastating depopulation of this distinctive species, an alarming decline estimated to be as much as 87% over the last three decades. The conservation of the Grevy’s Zebra requires commitment and coordination among many partners locally and internationally. Like many species facing an uncertain future in the wild, the Grevy’s Zebra is being cooperatively managed and bred in international zoo programs to ensure that the herds in human care remain genetically and demographically viable for future generations. The cooperation and transfer of Grevy’s Zebras

among zoos and between regionallymanaged programs guarantees the continued success of the global zoo population. In tandem with their ex situ conservation efforts, international zoos are playing a key role in Kenya and Ethiopia by providing financial support and fundraising assistance for Grevy’s Zebra in situ conservation initiatives. Since 2004, dozens of international zoos have become collaborative partners in field conservation programs in the effort to save Grevy’s Zebra. With this continued commitment, the combination of global cooperative zoo programs, heightened international awareness to the plight of the endangered Grevy’s Zebra and increased field conservation partnerships will save this magnificent species from extinction. With less than a half of a percent of the Grevy’s Zebra range falling within official protected areas, this species’ survival depends heavily upon the attitudes and engagement of people in community areas. Towards this end, in 2007 the Grevy’s Zebra Trust, an independent wildlife conservation organization based in Kenya, was established to address the urgent need to conserve Grevy’s Zebra in the community rangelands of Ethiopia and Kenya. The Grevy’s Zebra Trust is working holistically to secure critical resources and safeguard this species from extinction across its range by engaging communities in Kenya and Ethiopia in the protection and monitoring of Grevy’s Zebra.


52 Because the future of the Grevy’s Zebra hangs in the balance, it is critical to monitor the populations within community areas. The Grevy’s Zebra Trust facilitates a collaborative initiative called the Grevy’s Zebra Scout Program in the community areas of northern Kenya. This program employs 21 women and men of the communities that share land with the Grevy’s Zebras to collect data on the distribution and abundance of the zebras. This successful program provides the benefit of equal-opportunity employment in the participating communities, a direct and tangible community incentive to support conservation activities. The positive effect of the Grevy’s Zebra Scout Program is evident not only on the ground where you can now regularly see livestock and Grevy’s Zebra sharing resources in communities where the Scout program is active, but it is also evident in the changed and more tolerant attitudes of community members towards wildlife. The information gathered by the Grevy’s Zebra Scouts guides the local conservation plans of the community-led conservancies so that community members themselves have the opportunity to make recommendations on ways to reduce competition between Grevy’s Zebra and livestock. Also through the Grevy’s Zebra Trust, Grevy’s Zebra Ambassadors are employed from remote communities in northern Kenya where Grevy’s Zebra are most threatened and where awareness of their conservation is low. The role of the Grevy’s Zebra Ambassadors is three-fold: to carry out routine security patrols to enhance the safety of the zebras and other wildlife, to collect field data on Grevy’s Zebra in order to inform local conservation strategies, and to consistently raise awareness among and engage their fellow community members in the importance of conserving the species.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

To ensure continued community support for Grevy’s Zebra conservation, the Grevy’s Zebra Trust holds community awareness workshops which are designed for knowledge exchange and discussion on Grevy’s Zebra conservation. Successful educational outreach also requires broad connections at many levels and action by children is one of the most effective ways to initiate change in the behavior of adults. The Grevy’s Zebra Trust awards secondary school bursaries (scholarships) to promising students from communities that host Grevy’s Zebra populations. The pastoral communities of northern Kenya are economically marginalized and this type of support to the education of their children is highly valued; it builds the capacity of the future generation and is a major catalyst in changing attitudes towards wildlife. Successful ongoing programs like the Grevy’s Zebra Scout Program exemplify the kind of holistic and synergistic approach that community conservation is all about. The communities have embraced the notion that what is good for the wildlife can be very good for the community. With continued investment into community-led conservation programs and into specific activities that address the threats facing Grevy’s Zebra, there is hope for this species in its native range. And in the case of Grevy’s Zebra, community conservation is not limited to Africa. After only a short period of time, the on-going campaign to raise awareness of Grevy’s Zebra within the zoo community has piqued the interest and encouraged the involvement of many individuals and zoological organizations internationally. As a result, responsiveness to the issues facing Grevy’s Zebra has risen to a high level and the global perception of this species has changed drastically. It is now realized that Grevy’s Zebra are a treasure which warrants conservation attention and investment both in our zoo community and in the wild. For more information about Grevy’s Zebra and the Grevy’s Zebra Trust, please go to www.grevyszebratrust. org.

We deeply appreciate the exceptional commitment to Grevy’s Zebra conservation by the following institutions that supported the Grevy’s Zebra Trust at the time of this presentation African Wildlife Foundation, AZA Equid TAG, Brevard Zoo Conservation Fund, California Desert Chapter of AAZK, Chicago Zoological Society/ Chicago Board of Trade, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, Dallas Zoo, Denver Zoological Society, Detroit Zoological Society, Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund, Earthwatch Institute, Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI), Fauna Research Inc., Gilman International Conservation/White Oak Conservation Center, Jackson Zoo, Jacksonville Zoo, James Warwick Photography, Kenya Wildlife Service, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens, Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association, Marwell Preservation Trust, Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, Mulhouse Zoo, Oakar Services, Oklahoma City Zoo, Oklahoma City Zoo AAZK, Oregon Zoo Foundation’s Future for Wildlife Conservation Fund, Northern Rangelands Trust, Phoenix Zoo, Prince Bernhard Fund for Nature, Princeton University, Riverbanks Zoo, Sacramento Zoo, Saint Louis Zoo AAZK, Saint Louis Zoo WildCare Institute, Sea World & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund, Sedgwick Co. Zoo, Toronto Zoo, USAID, Utah’s Hogle Zoo, Wildlife Conservation Network, Zoological Society of San Diego, Zuercher Tierschutz

Martha Fischer | Saint Louis Zoo, USA | Fischer@stlzoo.org


53

October 2009 | St Louis

Report on the Economic and Social Contribution of the Zoological Industry in Australia Martin Phillips – Executive Director & Vish Bery – Aegis Consulting Australia and Applied Economics presented by Susan Hunt – President, Zoo and Aquarium Association Australasia (previously ARAZPA)

This report was commissioned by the Australasian Regional Association of Zoological Parks and Aquaria (ARAZPA) to assist it to determine the economic and social value that wildlife parks, zoos and aquariums contribute to Australia. The consultants have assessed five main possible values of zoological organisations (zoos). These are: • Economic value, measured in terms of contributions to Gross Domestic Product, employment and tourism (production value). • Value for consumers, measured via visitor survey results, the revenue and financial support provided to zoos and consumer surplus (recreational value). • Value of contribution to conservation, measured by the nature and results of in-situ and ex-situ programs and research. • Value of contribution to education, measured by the nature and results of school, tertiary and visitor education programs and their links to raising conservation awareness and motivating behaviour change. • Value of contribution to bio-security, measured by the role zoos play in protecting Australia’s biodiversity and environment and primary production industries.

The consultant’s assessment of these values was based on: • Their formal survey of all 107 zoos in Australia, to which 20 organisations (representing 24 zoos) responded. • Visits they made to 18 zoos (6 of whom did not respond to the survey). • Consultations with the majority of the more than 35 conservation and 20 education experts that they contacted to test the value of zoos. • Literature and data reviews, including information from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The 30 zoos participating in the report represent the vast majority of conservation, education, research and other social and economic contributions by the zoo sector. The zoos responding to the survey and visited by the consultants reflected a wide cross section of large, medium, small, government, private, not for profit, urban and regional zoos in each State and Territory of Australia. Overall, in preparing this report, the consultants gathered data and information from a total of 30 zoos (28 per cent of all 107 zoos) of which 22 are ARAZPA members (56 per cent of institutional members) and 8 are non members.

Economic Value of Zoos Based on the consultant’s survey, the total estimated production by zoos is worth about $424 million per annum. This consists of annual operating expenditure of about $358 million and capital expenditure of about $66 million. Zoos employ about 5300 people, including 3700 full-time employees and 1600 part-time employees. International visitors to zoos may create an estimated net benefit to the Australian economy of about $58 million per annum in addition to their payments for admissions to zoos. Allowing for a multiplier of up to 2.0, this could convert to a total value of about $116 million per annum.

Value for Consumers In 2005-06, nearly 36 per cent of the population over 15 years of age visited a zoo at least once. More Australians visits zoos each year than any other form of cultural entertainment, apart from movies (65 per cent). Zoos have maintained this rate of visitation for over ten years. It is significant that zoos maintain the second highest level of annual visitation compared to other cultural activities, such as libraries, museums and art galleries, even though zoo visits come at a cost and general admission to libraries, museums and art galleries is generally free. This is a strong indicator of the value that consumers attribute to zoos.


54 There are an estimated 15.4 million visits to zoos per annum, which include about 3.3 million visits by international tourists and 12.1 million visits by Australian residents. Overall the private sector, including visitors, contributes three-quarters of the revenue of zoos. This is an indication of the minimum level of benefits to consumers. The price of admission is one source of this private revenue. The median price of admission to ARAZPA member zoos is about $24 per adult and $12 per child. Consumer surveys indicate that the benefits to consumers are typically greater than their payments for admissions. Many consumers have consumer surpluses. However, the consultants do not have data on the possible magnitudes for such surpluses. State governments contribute about a quarter of the revenue of zoos. On a per capita basis their contribution is only $2.92 across Australia or $4 per visitor. Between 2006 and 2008 the Commonwealth government allocated only $1.1 million to three zoos (two of which are State government owned zoos). These contributions are very low compared to government subsidies provided to other less popular cultural activities, such as libraries, museums and art galleries. Analysis of general surveys conducted by zoos show a particularly high level of consumer satisfaction with zoo education. These surveys suggest that learning about the animals themselves has overtaken the pure novelty or entertainment value of zoos as one of the principal reasons why people visit. Recent independent studies confirm this and demonstrate that 76 per cent of international tourists are interested or very interested in experiencing (mainly iconic) native wildlife and of these more than half preferred to visit either a zoo or wildlife park, rather than take a tour in the wild.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

The value that consumers place on zoos is also represented by the: • Number of people who belong to Zoo Friends Associations (more than 167 000) and the median price they are willing to pay for Zoo Friends membership (about $80 per person for ARAZPA member zoos). • Number of people who volunteer at zoos (2300). • Number of corporate sponsors of zoos (198). • Amount of non-corporate donations to zoos (about $10 million in 2007–08).

Value of Conservation Activities There are many perspectives on what conservation means, but in reality zoos play a role in delivering ex situ and in situ conservation for both biological diversity and conserving wild populations of animals in their natural habitats. The significant value that the international community places on conservation is reflected by the commitment of the vast majority of nations in the world to key international treaties regulating the conservation of biological diversity and import and export of endangered species, as well as the widespread membership of the World Conservation Union (IUCN). The significant value that the Australian community places on conservation is reflected by the Australian Government’s ratification of these international treaties and the range of Commonwealth and State regulation concerning threatened species and habitat protection. There are a myriad of views about how to measure the contribution of zoos to conservation. Some consider that zoos either make no contribution or that it cannot be measured. The vast majority of parties consulted during the preparation of this report (including most NGOs) consider that zoos make valuable and unique contributions to both ex situ and in situ conservation.

The general value to Australian society of zoos in situ and ex situ native species conservation is particularly significant because according to the Australian Government, 93 per cent of frogs, 89 per cent of reptiles, 85 per cent of flowering plants, 82 per cent of mammals, and 45 percent of land birds that occur in Australia are unique in the world. Thus any effort to conserve native species is arguably valuable, regardless of the number species or animals within a species that are saved. One of the clearest methods developed to assess the contribution of zoos to conservation suggests that conservation projects undertaken by zoos should be measured according to the (1) importance of the project to conserving wild species or their habitats, (2) the scale of the project and (3) the impact of the project. The difficulty with this is the long timeframes projects need to make a discernable difference. This approach is also project based and not suitable for the kind of national assessment undertaken in this report. Accordingly the consultants have assessed the contributions of zoos against the specific criteria relating to ex situ and in situ conservation that the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) requires ratifying parties to undertake. Australia is a party to the CBD. Judged against these criteria and based on the survey data: • Zoos deliver 4 of the 5 CBD criteria for ex situ conservation. • Zoos deliver 4 of the 13 CBD criteria for in situ conservation. • 24 zoos hold about 3900 species of native and exotic vertebrates and invertebrates. Of these 173 are • Australian native species and 197 are exotic species included on the IUCN Red List of endangered species. These are not net figures as many of these zoos hold the same species under joint breeding programs. • Some larger highly resourced zoos undertake their own conservation and scientific research, but many SME and large zoos fund external research. Between 2006 and 2008, 10 SME and large organisations pro-


55

October 2009 | St Louis

vided over $2M in research funding Value of Education Activities to universities and other research institutions. • 16 zoos participate in specific in situ Zoos provide a range of conservation conservation programs. Spending education programs for school and on in situ programs occurs through tertiary students, visitors and the general capital expenditure (such as general public. All of the 18 zoos (exanimal facilities to support breeding cept one) visited by the consultants programs for reintroduction); distriduring the preparation of this report bution of public donations collected demonstrate a very strong commitat animal displays in support of ment to student and visitor education campaigns about threatened spethrough all facets of zoo operations cies and donations from Zoo Friends ranging from signage to mobile zoos Associations. and community based programs. • In 2007/08 these 16 zoos implemented 75 in situ programs to Zoos meet all the standards of conconserve 48 native endangered servation education programs set by species. Eighty one (81) per cent of the European Association of Zoos and these programs are recovery and Aquaria (EAZA). In 2007-08 19 zoos re-introduction programs and 19 per provided formal education to about cent are habitat species manage613 000 students nationally. In many ment programs. states zoo education programs are • In 2007/08 12 zoos contributed 37 in either integrated with or reflect state situ programs for the conservation education curriculum. of 20 exotic species. Of these 35 programs are habitat and species Education experts consider that zoos management programs and 2 are are a unique place for: recovery and reintroduction pro• Children to learn about environmental issues because they can see grams. These 12 zoos also contriband feel animals and this sensory uted to 5 international programs for experience is essential to the way the creation of sanctuaries in the children learn; wild. Almost all of these programs • Field and zoo biologists to study. are undertaken in conjunction with Biologists are essential for animal an NGO. husbandry, animal welfare and con• The international programs to which necting environment sustainability these 12 zoos contributed occurred with issues of development and ecoin 15 countries, 14 of which are nomic growth; and developing. • Veterinary science students to • 15 zoos provide wildlife rehabilitation programs for native species learn about animal care and wildlife and treat over 14 000 animals each medicine. year. The cost of these programs is Only 4 zoos seek to evaluate their absorbed in the general operating education programs as part of their expenditure of zoos. Nevertheless, given the volume of animals treated visitor surveys or in other ways in relation to school education. The surgovernment agencies and/ or NGOs vey conducted by one of these zoos would require significant expert personnel and financial resources to indicates that 83 per cent of visitors discovered new things they didn’t substitute this function. know about before visiting the zoo. In making these assessments the Overall, education program evaluaconsultants have not attempted tion is not highly developed amongst to rank species that are subject to zoos globally. But Australian zoos are conservation programs according to investing in new research to undertheir worth to eco systems, as this is beyond the scope of this report. How- stand how education programs can ever it is generally acknowledged that and should change visitor behaviour to support conservation over the long some species are more important to term. eco systems than others.

Nevertheless during their visits to zoos, the consultants observed that zoos make strong attempts through animal exhibits and signage and other material about threatened species and habitats to stimulate emotional responses in visitors and suitable reactions in support of conservation. The report has identified some case studies that seem to illustrate that zoo education can stimulate longer lasting behaviour change for conservation.

Value of Bio-security Activities Zoos play an important role in bio security because most diseases over the last 30 years are zoonotic or occur first in wildlife. Bio security management tends to be undertaken by large zoos, universities, NGOs and government agencies working in collaboration because smaller zoos do not have the resources to fund such work. Wildlife disease surveillance is coordinated nationally through the Australian Wildlife Health Network (AWHN), in which many zoos participate. A review of Australia’s bio security regime in October 2008 found that the AWHN performs an invaluable role in monitoring disease in feral and native wildlife, but requires more personnel and resources to work at an optimal level. Zoos collaborate with other organisations to maintain the Australian Registry of Wildlife Health (the Registry) which undertakes diagnostic work, disease investigation, disease surveillance, research, and education. Martin Phillips | ARAZPA, Australia | martin@arazpa.org.au Vish Bery | Aegis Consulting, Australia | aegis.consulting@bigpond.com


56

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Climate change and biodiversity Our engagement challenge Paul Pearce-Kelly – Zoological Society London

Of course, the many conventional conservation issues we already have to contend with are demanding enough but the climate change threat makes our task even more challenging and urgent. Furthermore, we cannot regard climate change as just another issue to deal with along with habitat loss, disease, invasive species, reintroduction efforts, education and socio-economic considerations etc. Rather climate change is a highly synergistic driver for all of these stresses and will determine the outcome of pretty much all of our conservation endeavors.

Fortunately the IUCN Species Programme, with a wide range of collaborators including the zoo and SSC community, has made good progress in better evaluating specieslevel climate change threat factors. These developments enable us to determine the susceptibility of a species, its adaptability potential and the degree of exposure it is likely to face. This evaluation approach appears valid across taxa groups and even though it is still being refined we are now much better placed to assess climate change threats in a standardized manner.

Current indicator trends (greenhouse gas emissions rates, temperature increase, sea ice reduction, sea level rise and so on) are either tracking or actually exceeding the worst case scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). IPCC has stated that even under the relatively low 1.5–2 degrees Centigrade temperature increase scenario global biodiversity loss is estimated to be in region of 20 to 30% percent. This biodiversity impact is not a threat for the far off future but one we are already seeing on the ground and across taxa groups.

As we go through this evaluation process there is little doubt that we are going to increasingly find species falling into an non-viability category in terms of viable habitat etc. This will not be confined to mountain and polar species and we will increasingly have to ask the question ‘what do we try and save? Up to now, we have seldom given up an any species but given these new realities we are gong to be increasingly challenged, especially as the number of species requiring our assistance is set to dramatically increase. We have just heard about the establishment of the joint WAZA and CBSG Climate Change Task Force which will be charged with helping our community to take the climate change engagement actions forward. This will certainly include improving current incorporation of climate change impact considerations in our collection planning process and conservation programme development considerations.

This task will be greatly aided by the big push over the last year to gather biodiversity related climate change information onto an open-access database called Bioclimate (www.bioclimate.org). So much is now in place for us to be better informed and to act accordingly. Another very significant development over the last year was a follow up action from our Adelaide meeting where concern was expressed that the Great Barrier Reef may already have passed viability threshold levels as far as the synergistic threats of global warming and ocean acidification are concerned. This was indeed confirmed by the 6 July 2009 Royal Society meeting of a coral reef crisis working group. The group’s statement and associated publication (Veron et al 2009) confirms the need to reduce atmospheric CO2 levels as far below 350ppm as possible if coral reef ecosystems are to remain viable. We are currently at 387ppm and therefore well past their viability threshold level. The same working group reviewed possible options for getting back to safe CO2 levels and the encouraging news is that this is technically feasible providing emissions are urgently curtailed together with C02 extraction measures such as reforestation and biochar.


57

October 2009 | St Louis

We need to be mindful that coral reefs are only the first of many ecosystems to suffer such planetary level impacts. Sea grasses and mangroves are two obvious highly coral reef dependant systems but the same climate change threats may well have far reaching impacts of wider marine elements such as critically important plankton groups as well as on ocean current dynamics. What other sensitive system thresholds have already or are near to being breached? We know that the planet’s ice systems are in a truly parlous sate and their demise will have profound consequences in terns of sea level rise, river system impact and perhaps most worrying of all thawing of tundra and continental ice shelves with potentially catastrophic releases of their huge carbon and methane stores. (Hansen 2009). The Amazon is another region of great concern with the most recent modeling work projecting some 70% reduction of rainforest cover within this century. It is all the more alarming therefore that emission rates continue to track the worst case IPCC emissions scenario and that destruction of essential natural systems, such as forests, peat-bogs and grasslands, continue to be destroyed at record rates. Their loss is greatly exacerbating the C02 emissions problem both in terms of direct contributory emissions and reduced sink capacity. If global temperatures are allowed to continue to rise then the vital carbon capture role these natural systems perform could well become compromised as the associated stress could see a shifting from their being carbon sinks to net carbon carbon sources. Urgent action is therefore essential if we are to avoid such positive feedback scenarios.

References The preservation of natural systems on their own, won’t prevent runaway • J. E. N. Veron, O. Hoegh-Guldberg, T. climate change (certainly if we conM. Lenton, J. M. Lough, D. O. Obura, tinue our current rate of emissions P. Pearce-Kelly, C. R. C. Sheppard, increase) but runaway climate change M. Spalding, M. G. Stafford-Smith, cannot be prevented without the A. D. Rogers (2009): The coral reef preservation of those natural systems. crisis: The critical importance of <350 It’s as simple as that and we need to ppm CO2 Marine Pollution Bulletin better convey their critical role. We 58 1428–1436 know that deforestation contributes • Hansen, James (2009): Storms of up to 20% of global CO2 emissions my Grandchildren The truth about with a further 8% being estimated the coming climate catastrophe and to come from the loss of wetlands. our last chance to save humanity. Grasslands and of course tundra and Bloomsbury Publishing Plc. ice shelves are also major reservoirs. • www.bioclimate.org It should be inconceivable that such natural system destruction is allowed to continue. The reality is that these Paul Pearce-Kelly | natural systems are the only thing Zoological Society London, UK | keeping us this side viability (inc. Paul.Pearce-Kelly@zsl.org buying us time to bring in the raft of other emission reduction actions) and yet they are being trashed at an increasing rate. This has got to be an engagement issue of the highest priority. Their critical role must be recognized with effective protection and the allocation of financial resources to ensure their wellbeing with all the associated human benefits. This all highlights the critical role that the zoo community needs to assume. We should aspire to become a driving force, especially in the all important awareness raising effort. This needs to be both at the highest political levels and through our proven ability to engage with our hundreds of millions of visitors and outreach audiences. Add to that our increased ability to access information, conduct evaluation work and internationally coordinate ourselves and it is clear that our community has a tremendous engagement potential which must be lived up to.


58

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

A Changing World Threatens the Future for Cranes George Archibald & Claire Mirande – International Crane Foundation

During recent decades we have had the privilege of studying and helping a charismatic and endangered family of birds – the cranes, primarily through the work of a team of conservationists at the International Crane Foundation (ICF) in Wisconsin, USA and with the support of colleagues in governments, universities, non-profit organizations and especially zoos.  During that period, the two species of cranes in North America, the Whooping Cranes and the Sandhill Cranes, increased as did the Eurasian Cranes in Europe and the Red-crowned Cranes in Japan.  It was a period when Chinese, Iranian and Russian colleagues discovered formerly unknown breeding and wintering sites for Siberian Cranes, and when many reserves were established for these and other endangered cranes in China, Russia, Kazakhstan, and Iran.  During the 1970s and 1980s, ICF’s work primarily concentrated on North America and Asia while during the last two decades we have also worked extensively in Africa.  In recent years, augmenting threats from hunting, poisoning, collision with power lines, habitat loss, climate change, and trade now threaten the survival of several species in the wild. A summary of the impacts of these key threats on the viability of crane populations is presented below.

Hunting During settlement of the grasslands of the central region of North America by Europeans during the nineteenth century, the pioneers partly depended on game for food. Their advance across the former breeding grounds of the Whooping Cranes resulted in the demise of the cranes both through hunting as well as destruction of wetlands. The last Whooping Cranes were reported on the prairies in 1922 and their eggs were collected.  Fortunately, a small population of Whooping Cranes survived in the wilderness of the boreal forests in northern Canada and it is has been from those birds that the species has partially recovered. Until recently, Siberian Cranes wintered in Iran and India. Protection on their remote breeding grounds of western Siberia was confirmed by normal numbers of juveniles in the flocks in winter. However, the Iranian wintering population declined from 12 in the mid-1990s to the last wild bird observed in Iran during the winter of 2008-09. Likewise, the population that wintered at the famed Keoladeo National Park in India declined from 76 birds in 1974 to the last pair observed during the winter of 2002-03. The attrition of these populations is attributed to hunting along migration routes extending several thousands of miles and over several nations.  Through work of conservationists, there are laws prohibiting hunting of cranes in all eleven range states. Unfortunately, there have been significant challenges with effective enforcement.  With the exception of India, hunting of birds is a widespread traditional

practice in the other range nations of the Siberian Cranes in western and central Asia. Well-regulated hunting practices in the former USSR have not been adhered to in some of the new emerging states following perestroika. Conflicts in Afghanistan since the late 1970s and the associated proliferation of firearms have augmented the threat. These hunting practices have impacted the populations of other migratory birds sharing the same flyways, including globally threatened species such as the Lesser White-fronted Goose and Red-breasted Goose.  ICF is working with the United Nations Environment Programme and the Convention on Migratory Species to develop model projects to address hunting issues at key sites in Western and Central Asia that can be scaled up and replicated throughout the region.

Poisoning Blue Cranes are endemic to the grasslands of South Africa. As grasslands were converted to crop lands, there was extensive crop damage from cranes. Many thousands of cranes perished prior to the 1990s from bait saturated with poisons. There were reports of truck loads of dead cranes collected at the bait sites.  Grey Crowned Cranes and Wattled Cranes whose southern populations overlap with the Blue Cranes were likewise killed. Fortunately, through efforts of conservationists, the poisoning of cranes has been greatly reduced in South Africa and the populations of the three species of cranes are recovering.


59

October 2009 | St Louis

The major populations of Grey Crowned Cranes live in wetland, grasslands and agricultural landscapes north of South Africa. While crop damage from cranes reduces profits on large farms in South Africa, crop damage by cranes is a much more serious threat to subsistent farmers. Crowned Cranes are easily baited and killed. Poisons are readily available to control agricultural diseases and pests. There are not extensive data available on impact of poisoning to Grey Crowned Cranes throughout their wide range. Poisoning in combination with trade has perhaps been responsible for the catastrophic decline in crane numbers in recent years.

Collisions with Power Lines To learn more about the biology of the migration of Whooping Cranes, radio transmitters were attached to pre-fledged cranes on the breeding grounds from 1981-83. The cranes were then monitored along the 2400 mile migration to Texas. Two of the six cranes died from collisions with power lines. The other four safely arrived on the wintering grounds. Each year, approximately 8-9 percent of the Whooping Cranes that leave Texas in spring do not return in autumn. Collisions are perhaps a major mortality factor. Such collisions have been a major mortality factor for the three species of cranes in South Africa, and can be expected to  have more impact on cranes in other African nations as electricity becomes more available throughout sub-Saharan Africa where at present only five percent of the population has electricity. During the next decades, numerous hydropower dams are planned for rivers in Africa to service tens of millions of people. The problems cranes face in South Africa will likely be magnified over much wider regions, in nations with comparatively fewer resources to minimize collisions.

Habitat Loss Wide expanses of shallow wetlands are vital for reproduction in all cranes except the Blue and Demoiselle cranes that more frequently nest in uplands but that require fresh water for drinking and often for roosting within the grassland and agricultural landscapes. To help assure provision of crabs and other live animal food, Whooping Crane pairs defend winter territories that include as many as 500 acres of shallow brackish wetlands.  If the State of Texas allows humans to tap most of the water from the Guadeloupe River, whose inflow creates the brackish water vital to the food base of the Whooping Cranes, the salinity will increase in the coastal wetlands, the animals on which the cranes feed will move to less saline waters of the Gulf of Mexico, and many of the Whooping Cranes will likely starve. The drought of 2008-09 that reduced fresh water inflow and caused the death of 23 of the 273 (8.5%) cranes was a harbinger of future consequences if fresh water inflows are further reduced. Wetland reclamation has been a major factor responsible for the decline of cranes, especially the Wattled Cranes of south-central Africa that minimize the flooding of their low platform nests, by laying their eggs when water levels crest on wide floodplains. Dams permanently inundate upstream floodplains while reducing downstream flow results in the desiccation of wetlands. Degradation of floodplains are considered to be responsible for the drop of Wattled Crane numbers from approximately 16,000 birds two decades ago to half that number in 2010.

Siberian Cranes are the most wetland dependent of the crane species. They depend on wetlands for breeding, migration resting and wintering areas. With the loss of the flocks of Siberian Cranes that wintered in Iran and India, the Siberian Crane is reduced to a single population of 3500-4000 birds that breeds in eastern Russia and migrates to Poyang Lake, the largest lake in China. Connected by a narrow neck to the Yangtze River and also fed by five smaller rivers, Poyang fills in summer in response to monsoon rains. When levels fall in autumn, tens of thousands of acres of mudflats, grasslands, and small shallow lakes appear and provide winter habitat for over 95% of the world’s Siberian Cranes, half of the White-naped Cranes, and a plethora of other species including the endangered Eastern White Stork, and the Swan Goose. Provincial authorities are currently planning to insert a dam across the neck of Poyang Lake to trap monsoon waters to maintain higher levels throughout the winter to promote navigation and fishing throughout the year. By permanently altering the ecosystem and submerging key foraging habitats, that dam could be the demise of Siberian Cranes in the wild.

Climate Change During the past decade, populations of Sandhill Cranes in eastern North America and Eurasian Cranes in Europe and Asia are wintering at locations many hundreds of miles north of traditional wintering areas. More than 10,000 Sandhills that formerly wintered in Florida now winter in Tennessee. Likewise thousands of Eurasian Cranes that wintered on the Iberian peninsula now winter in northern France, and Eurasian Cranes that recently wintered on the Indian subcontinent now winter along the basin of the Amu Darya River in northern Afghanistan and in southern Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. The meteorological picture is complex with unseasonably mild winters in some regions and unseasonably cold winters in others, a prediction associated with global warming.


60

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Black-necked Cranes that are endemic to the Tibetan Plateau nest during the short summer on wetlands between 12,000 and 16,500 feet above sea level. These alpine wetlands are fed by summer melting of glaciers and monsoon rains. Since comprehensive counts of the cranes were completed in the early 1990s, the numbers of cranes have increased from about 7,000 to 11,000 birds. There is a possibility that the increase is in part correlated with an increase in acreage of wetlands and the widely reported augmented melting of glaciers.  If the glaciers disappear, perhaps the wetlands will decease and with them the cranes. Elevated sea levels are predicted if ice continues to melt at accelerating rates. Coastal wetlands vital to Whooping Cranes wintering beside the Gulf of Mexico and to Redcrowned Cranes along the east coast of China and the west coast of the Korean peninsula could be inundated, thus removing critical habitats for these endangered cranes.

Trade Cranes are magnificent birds and are frequently displayed in zoos, parks and private collections. In former times when cranes were more numerous, the take of cranes from the wild did not likely have a significant impact on their populations.  However, with reduced crane numbers in the wild and an escalating demand for cranes in captivity, and widespread poverty near many areas where cranes live, the taking of cranes from the wild for trade is a major threat especially in sub-Saharan Africa.

Recent research indicates that thousands of cranes are illegally captured and exported from Africa to animal dealers and captive facilities in western Europe, the Middle East and in China. The vast inland delta of the Niger River in Mali was a major stronghold for the Black Crowned Cranes. The wetland remains, but the cranes are absent. Although the Black Crowned Crane and the Grey Crowned Crane are respectively the National Birds of Nigeria and Uganda, cranes have vanished from Nigeria and the numbers in Uganda have dropped by 85% during the past two decades. Both species of crowned cranes have been on Appendix II of CITES since 1985.  They were recently included in the Significant Trade Review Process which requires that countries now prove that the trade will not having a significant negative impact on wild populations. There are approximately 12,000 zoos in the world and untold numbers of parks and private collectors. Only ten percent of the zoos belong to regional and global zoo associations. The majority of cranes taken from the wild are likely destined for parks, private collections and unaccredited zoos in the Middle East and China posing greater challenges to increasing awareness and reducing detrimental trade. In her presentation on African Crane Trade at this symposium, Kerryn Morrison presents a thorough analysis of this problem and suggests solutions.

What Can We Do To Help the Cranes? Thousands of people worldwide are concerned about the welfare of cranes and are trying to reduce the impacts of these threats.  Through the efforts of The Endangered Wildlife Trust there is a slow increase in the three species of cranes in South Africa. The work of the Governments of Canada and the USA and also of private organizations such as the Whooping Crane Conservation Association and the North American Crane Working Group, have helped with the slow recovery of Whooping Cranes from 16 birds in the migratory population to 263 in 2010. The Government of Japan and the local governments and farmers in southeastern Hokkaido, through marking of power lines and winter feeding programs, have helped the Red-crowned Cranes increase from about 50 birds a halfcentury ago to more than 1200. The protection of Siberian Cranes and their habitats in China since the early 1980’s, helped Siberian Cranes increase from perhaps 1000 to several thousands. Zoos too numerous to mention, have been made outstanding contributions to crane conservation through innovative husbandry and scientific research on captive cranes and leadership of genetic and demographic management programs.   A captive “Species Bank” of 150 Whooping Cranes has been established at several centers in Canada and the USA, and likewise for about 400 Siberian Cranes at centers in the USA, Russia, Belgium, and China. Birds produced in captivity are now being used in experiments to restore populations in the wild. Most crane species breed well in captivity if fundamental husbandry practices are applied. Viable captive populations of the three most endangered species, the Whooping Crane, Red-crowned Crane and the Siberian Crane have been established. However, recent assessments show that the majority of these programs are not achieving targeted goals and there is an urgent need for zoos to strengthen strategies to maintain viable and sustainable captive popula-


61

October 2009 | St Louis

tions. The captive populations are aging and valuable bloodlines are at risk of being lost.  Regional management programs and global coordination among these programs needs to be revitalized by species champions within the zoo community.   Space for captive cranes are limited and coordinated  worldwide management of sustainable captive populations of all species is needed to support conservation goals and to reduce negative impacts from excessive import of wild birds.  Zoos are also needed to serve a critical role in informing and inspiring diverse audiences, including decision makers, on the plight of cranes.  Several zoos have provided direct financial support of field conservation programs, but there is a need for enhanced collaboration between zoos and field conservation programs. The International Crane Foundation (ICF) in Wisconsin is dedicated to the conservation of the world’s 15 species of cranes. ICF’s efforts are concentrated on saving several critical ecosystems for cranes including fresh water inflows to the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge where Whooping Cranes winter, the conservation of natural water cycles at Poyang Lake, China, where the Siberian Cranes winter, and the long-term, conservation of lowlands of the Demilitarized Zone and adjacent Civilian Controlled Zone on the Korean peninsula where one-third of the world’s Red-crowned Cranes winter, and the restoration of water cycles on floodplains of the Zambezi River vital to the majority of the world’s Wattled Cranes. ICF partners with the Endangered Wildlife Trust in South Africa in reducing the trade of African cranes and in community-based conservation programs in several African nations. ICF is also a partner in the captive management of cranes and several reintroduction efforts. If your institution is interested in joining this effort, please contact one or more of the following staff members at ICF:

• Crane trade, Kerryn Morrison | kerrynm@ewt.org.za • Captive management, Claire Mirande | mirande@savingcranes.org • Veterinary medicine, Dr. Barry Hartup | hartup@savingcranes.org • Communication  and public awareness, Dr. Erica Cochrane | ecochrane@savingcranes.org • Public relations, Ann Burke | aburke@savingcranes.org • Crane literature, Betsy Didrickson | library@savingcranes.org • Ecosystem conservation, Dr. Richard Beilfuss | rich@savingcranes.org Jeb Barzen | Jeb@savingcranes.org Jim Harris | harris@savingcranes.org • Crane research, Anne Lacey | anne@savingcranes.org Gopi Sundar | gopi.sundar@gmail.com • Community based conservation, Dr. Tran Triet | ttriet@gmail.com Osiman Mabbachi | osimanm@ewt.org.za Saving cranes through the next century will depend on the collaboration of many like-minded partners. ICF welcome opportunities to join forces with more zoos and aquaria in helping this magnificent group of birds survive a future clouded by many threats.

References Cited • Bishop, Mary Anne, and Tsamchu Drolma. “Black-Necked Crane & BarHeaded Goose Populations Wintering in South-Central Tibet, People’s Republic of China: Summary of Results, January 3-14, 2007.”, 6 page unpublished report. 2007. • Canadian Wildlife Service, and U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Interna‑ tional Recovery Plan for the Whoop‑ ing Crane, Grus Americana, 2007. • Harris, James T. “Cranes Respond to Climate Change.” The ICF Bugle 34, no. 3 (2008): 1-3, 14-15. • Johnsgard, Paul A. Cranes of the World. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1983. • Johnson, Richard, Zou Hongfei, and Rey C. Stendell, eds. Cranes in East Asia: Proceedings of the Symposium Held in Harbin, People’s Republic of China, June 9-18, 1998. Open File Report, 01-403. Fort Collins, CO: U. S. Geological Survey, Midcontinent Ecological Science Center, 2001. • Kuyt, Ernie. “Aerial Radio-Tracking of Whooping Cranes Migrating Between Wood Buffalo National Park and Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, 1981-84.” Canadian Wildlife Service, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 1992. • Meine, Curt D., and George W. Archibald. The Cranes: Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan. Gland, Switzerland: IUCN, 1996. • Sundar, K. S. Gopi, and B. C. Choudhury. “Mortality of Sarus Cranes Grus Antigone Due to Electricity Wires in Uttar Pradesh, India.” En‑ vironmental Conservation 32, no. 3 (2005): 1-10. • Treuenfels, Carl-Albrecht von, Matthew D Gaskins, and Ben Posener. The Magic of Cranes. New York: Abrams, 2006. • Williams, Emmanuel T. C., Richard Beilfuss, and Tim Dodman. Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan for the Black Crowned Crane Balearica Pavonina. Dakar, Senegal: International Crane Foundation, Wetlands International, 2004. Dr. George Archibald | International Crane Foundation | george@savingcranes.org


62

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

Sustaining the Ark – The Need for Global Species Management Jonathan Wilcken & Caroline Lees – Auckland Zoological Park

The zoo and aquarium community A number of assessments of regional has embarked on a remarkable range species management programs have of work aimed at conserving the found that populations of wildlife world’s wildlife (Hutchins & Conway, held by zoos are in poor health 1995; Baker, 2007). There has been (Magin et al., 1994; Earnhardt et al., considerable discussion about the 2001; Baker, 2007). A study conducted ways in which zoos and aquaria can by the Australasian zoo and aquarium further expand this work and our relassociation, for example, looked at evance to biodiversity conservation the sustainability of zoo populations (WAZA, 2005). In zoos and aquaria, for 87 species of mammal (Lees and Wilcken, 2009). It found that, where this work is enabled, directly or indirectly, by the managed populations of populations are managed: • 59% are founded by a sample of wildlife we care for. If this work is to fewer than 20 individuals, a widely continue, there is clearly a need to be recommended threshold (Foose & able to sustain these populations. Ballou, 1988) • 45% are already below recommended levels of genetic variability, being We are not yet managing to do this 90% of that of wild populations (Soule et al. 1986) • 52% are in demographic decline Without managing our own wildlife • 67% are in population sizes less than populations sustainably, zoos and 200 animals, a rule of thumb used aquaria are unable to plan securely for elsewhere to indicate longer-term the future, and our messages about population viability under intensive the need for society to act more sustainably are compromised. There is an management (Baker, 2007) urgent need for the zoo and aquarium More recent and more wide-ranging community to face the challenge of assessments conducted by the improving our own sustainable wildlife European Association of Zoos and management practices. Aquariums covered substantially greater numbers of programs with very similar, and worrying, results. These evaluations indicate populations in a poor state, and therefore unlikely to persist or to reflect good conservation breeding practice. However, they do not directly assess what it would take to establish long-term population viability for intensively managed populations of these species. Nor do they take account of the relationship between zoo and wild populations.

It seems worthwhile, therefore, to explore further what is meant by population sustainability. A key starting point is to re-examine how the zoo and aquarium community considers timeframes. Traditionally, population goals for zoo-based programs have been time-limited. For example, population management in zoos is often directed at retaining certain population characteristics over periods of 200 or 100 years (Soule et al. 1986). When such targets were first proposed, they were revolutionary – few human endeavours can claim planning over such a timeframe. However, while certainly long in political and organisational terms, these timeframes are relatively short in wildlife conservation terms. A goal of maintaining the essential qualities of a species over 100 years begs the question, what happens in the year 101? With rising human populations, and increasing population impact, it would be optimistic in the extreme to predict that more habitat will be available for wildlife in 100 years time than there is today.


63

October 2009 | St Louis

There will certainly be some species, currently threatened, for which zoos might usefully plan for a time when they will be safe. The greater sticknest rat, Leporillus conditor, was once considered Endangered. Bred prolifically in zoos, it was subsequently re-established at five new sites evaluated at the outset for their combined ability to support sustainable populations. The species now numbers in excess of 5000 animals in the wild (Copley et al., 2007), and zoos have been able to reassign resources to other species by reducing the intensively managed population to a small core for education purposes, supplemented periodically from wild sites.

It seems that, for such species, we should be looking beyond particular timeframes. In the case of species like Sumatran tigers, we need to acknowledge that inherently unsustainable wild populations will need on-going management support. And we do need to consider that such wild populations may well benefit, at some stage in the future, from the use of intensively managed populations in zoos as genetic reservoirs.

This calls for us to re-evaluate those of our programs that do not have a clearly defined and likely end-point, not only against criteria of population health, but also of population sustainability. Are they are able to persist indefinitely? Do they have the demographic characteristics to withstand population fluctuations? Do they have the genetic resources to maintain variability and adaptive potential?

Indeed, we believe that zoos and aquariums need to recognise that, for some species, ex situ populations are now, and will be, vital parts of their range.

There are two ways in which this can be achieved. Populations can be selfsustaining, or they can be sustainably supplemented. This is equally true of both intensively managed and wild populations.

However, for very many species currently held by zoos, this will not be the case. For example, there is currently no basis for assuming Sumatran tigers, Panthera tigris sumatrae, will be secure in the wild within any particular timeframe. It does not appear to make sense, therefore, to manage a zoo population of Sumatran tigers as though it is either replenish-able or not required 100 years hence. Yet we currently do.

Further, as the impacts of climate change and emerging wildlife diseases create an increasingly unpredictable future for wild populations, it is difficult to predict with confidence for which species this will be the case. For example, until recently, Tasmanian devils, Sarcophilus harrisii, were considered numerous in their native Tasmania. Now under acute threat from a new and universally fatal devil facial tumour disease (Loh et al., 2006), this species faces possible extinction within 25–30 years (DPIW, 2008), a prognosis unthinkable only 15 years ago.

We should not explicitly manage species programs towards an arbitrary end date if there is no reasonable basis for assuming that the species will be secure by that time.

In practical terms this means zoos and aquaria need to manage much larger populations, and where possible, to integrate their management more closely with that of wild populations.


64 Self sustaining populations Self-sustaining populations must be of a size that retains adaptive potential. That is, such populations must be sufficient to maintain a balance between genetic variation lost through drift, and gained through mutation. What size this is has been a source of some debate, however scientific consensus converges on a genetically effective size (Ne) of 500 (Frankham et al., 2002). Where intensively managed, this can be achieved though actual populations of between ~700 – 2000 animals, depending on how effectively they are managed (Willis & Wiese, 1993; Frankham et al., 2002).

Sustainable supplementation Sustainable supplementation provides an alternative to this approach, where genetic and demographic health is sustained through supplementation. This would depend upon the existence of a sustainable source population able to support the necessary harvest. It would also require a proper assessment, biologically and politically, of the potential to establish plans that explicitly link the management of intensively managed and source wild populations. Conway and others have long been advocating this (Conway, 1995; Stanley Price & Fa, 2007). The population sizes required in zoos using such an approach will be necessarily smaller than those required for self-sustaining populations, by how much will depend on the rate of supplementation possible. Work by Lacy (1987) suggests that five new founders per generation would provide some genetic stability to a genetically effective population of 120 animals. In zoos this probably equates to between 170–460 animals.

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

A synergy between these two approaches suggests a shift in approach in the planning and management of intensively managed populations in zoos and aquaria. This would involve establishing a direct link between the sustainability of zoo and wild populations, and a move away from speculative, arbitrary program end points. Such an approach would see zoos and aquaria, where possible, establishing responsible, science-based supplementation programs. This would minimise the resources required in the management of these species, allowing resources to be redirected to species in more critical need. Where this is not possible, larger selfsustaining populations (Ne 500) may need to be established. For example, where zoos and aquaria hold species that are critically endangered and extinct in the wild, it seems difficult to justify aiming for anything less than self-sustaining populations in some form or other. These considerations call not just for a shift in approach, but also for a shift in priorities. For zoos and aquaria to tackle the challenge of sustainability effectively, collection planning and facility development must be underpinned by a philosophy of sustainability. Zoos and aquaria will need to look more closely at the species planned for and the specialist breeding facilities available to support these species. A focus, exclusively, on front-of-house exhibitory will not serve sustainability requirements.

There is also a need to support the development of expertise required to deliver programs for sustainably managed populations. The number of specialist population biologists employed by zoos, for example, remains limited compared with the investment in other specialist fields. A 2006 survey of the number of vertebrate species per specialist in Australasian zoos revealed that, while zoos employ one educator for every 11 species held, one vet for every 14 species held, and one marketer for every 20 species held, they only employ one population biologist for every 333 species. A shift in priorities is needed. There is a growing realisation, too, that a wider collaboration than currently exists will be needed for any real improvement in sustainable population management in zoos and aquaria. As recent assessments attest (Magin et al., 1994; Earnhardt et al., 2001; Baker, 2007, Lees & Wilcken, 2009), for very many species, regional collaboration will not provide zoos and aquaria with the population sizes needed. Globally, there is greater sustainability potential. Without any further population growth, but with wider collaboration, 9% of all current International Studbook populations are large enough to be self-sustaining under an appropriate management regime, and 57% could be managed sustainably if supplemented by somewhere in the region of 5 founders per generation.


65

October 2009 | St Louis

Global frameworks for linking regional programs urgently need to be properly resourced and supported. Through the efforts of pioneers such as Bert De Boer, WAZA (then IUDZG) embarked on developing global collaboration over 15 years ago. At the same time, the IUCN Conservation Breeding Specialist Group focused on facilitating planning for such programs (Seal et al., 1994). A formal framework for global species management programs accepted by the WAZA membership 6 years ago (Wilcken, 2007). However, after all these efforts, there are only five registered Global Species Management Programs (Morgan, this volume).

Step 3. Global targets and strategies Global target population sizes need to be established and agreed for each priority species based on appropriate science and a rationale of sustainability. Where sustainability is to be achieved through supplementation, a formal assessment of the viability of the source population will be required.

Step 4. Global investment

Clearly, further support for global species initiatives are needed. A five step process has been proposed for this (Lees & Wilcken, 2009).

Targeted investment in facilities, professional species managers, and other relevant expertise will be required. For such a global response to be effective, it will need facilitation and support at a global level by organisations such as WAZA and CBSG.

Step 1. Global audit

Step 5. Global commitment

Global, rather than regional, reviews of the status and potential of intensively managed populations are needed.

Long-term commitments will be required by participating institutions, a commitment that will need developing and nurturing by WAZA, and the support of substantive global frameworks and agreements.

Step 2. Global planning Such reviews will help inform the development of a list of priority species for which there is both potential for sustainable management in zoos and aquaria, and a need. The earlier experiences of the CBSG in facilitating such processes might be useful in such a context.

The role of WAZA In earlier papers in this volume, the zoo and aquarium community has been challenged, by the IUCN Species Survival Commission, by Conservation International, by Wetlands International and by Flora and Fauna International, to see ourselves as guardians of species. To do so, zoos and aquariums need to establish truly sustainable conservation breeding programs, where the managed populations we care for act as a true and effective adjunct to those in the wild. In our view, there is no more important work for a global zoo and aquarium organisation.


66

Proceedings of 64th Annual Conference

References • BAKER, A. (2007): Animal ambassadors: an analysis of the effectiveness and conservation impact of ex situ breeding efforts. In Zoos in the 21st century: catalysts for conservation?: 139–154. Zimmermann, A., Hatchwell, M., Dickie, L. & West, C. (Eds). London: Zoological Society of London. • CONWAY, W. (1995): Wild and zoo interactive management and habitat conservation. Review of Industrial Organisation 4: 573–594. • COPLEY, P., HAFIZ, S. & PEDLAR, L. (2007): Threatened species – the recovery of the greater stick-nest rat. Adelaide: Department for Environment and Heritage. • www.environment.sa.gov.au/biodiversity/sticknestrat.html (as at 7 March 2008). • DPIW (2008): About Tasmanian devils: distribution. Hobart, Tasmania: Department of Primary Industries and Water. www.dpiw.tas.gov.au/ inter.nsf/WebPages/BHAN-5358KH? open#Distribution (as at 23 February 2008). • EARNHARDT, J. M., THOMPSON, S. D. & MARHEVSKY, E. A. (2001): Interactions of target population size, population parameters and program management on viability of captive populations. Zoo Biology 20: 169–183.

• FRANKHAM, R., BALLOU, J. & BRISCOE, D. (2002): An introduction to conservation genetics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. • FOOSE, T. & BALLOU, J. (1988): Management of small populations. International Zoo Yearbook 27: 26–41. • HUTCHINS, M. & CONWAY, W. G. (1995): Beyond Noah’s Ark: the evolving role of modern zoological parks and aquariums in field conservation. International Zoo Yearbook 34: 117–130. • LACY, R. C. (1987): Loss of genetic diversity from managed populations: interacting effects of drift, mutation, immigration selection and population sub-division. Conservation Biology 1: 143–158. • LEES, L. & WILCKEN, J. (2009) Sustaining the Ark: the challenges faced by zoos in maintaining viable populations Int. Zoo Yb. 43: 6–18 • LOH, R., BERGFELD, J., HAYES, D., O’HARA, A., PYECROFT, S., RAIDAL, S. & SHARPE, R. (2006): The pathology of devil facial tumour disease (DFTD) in Tasmanian devils (Sar• Sarcophilus harrisii). Veterinary Pathology 43: 890–895. • MAGIN, C., JOHNSON, T., GROOMBRIDGE, B., JENKINS, M. & SMITH, H. (1994): Species extinctions, endangerment and captive breeding. In Creative conservation: interactive management of wild and captive animals: 3–31. Olney, P., Mace, G. & Feistner, A. (Eds). London: Chapman and Hall.

• SEAL, U. S., FOOSE, T. J. & ELLIS, S. (1994): Conservation Assessment and Management Plans (CAMPs) and Global Captive Action Plans (GCAPs). In Creative conservation: interactive management of wild and captive animals: 312–325. Olney, P., Mace, G. & Feistner, A. (Eds). London: Chapman and Hall. • SOULE´, M., GILPIN, M., CONWAY, W. & FOOSE, T. (1986): The millenium ark: how long a voyage, how many staterooms, how many passengers? Zoo Biology 5: 101–113. • STANLEY PRICE, M. R. & FA, J. E. (2007): Reintroductions from zoos: a conservation guiding light or a shooting star? In Zoos in the 21st century: catalysts for conservation?: 155–177. Zimmermann, A., Hatchwell, M., Dickie, L. & West, C. (Eds). London: The Zoological Society of London. • WAZA (2005): Building a future for wildlife. The world zoo and aquarium conservation strategy. Bern: World Association of Zoos and Aquariums. www.waza.org/conservation/wzacs_htm_versions.php. • WILCKEN, J. (2007): Global species management programs. ARAZPA News 75: 40. • WILLIS, K. &WIESE, R. (1993): Effect of new founders on retention of gene diversity in captive populations: a formalisation of the nucleus population concept. Zoo Biology 12: 535–548. Jonathan Wilcken | Auckland Zoological Park | Jonathan.Wilcken@aucklandcity. govt.nz


Š JM, St. Louis St. Louis Conference participants.


www.waza.org

ISSN: 2073-6576


WAZA_Proceedings_StLouis_Congress