EAZA members work from the assumption that we can, and are obliged, to do whatever is possible to protect nature, both in the field and in our institutions
In recent years, our effect on the planet has been devastating, with a massive decline in animal numbers and habitats across the globe. EAZA has never believed that keeping animals in our institutions replaces action in the wild - but experience also shows us that the knowledge and finance that we and our visitors can provide to field conservation projects can make a huge difference. EAZA believes that zoos and aquariums form one pillar of the structure that is needed to safeguard the future.
Our approach to species conservation, called the One Plan approach, recognises that zoos and in situ conservationists need not only to work together to protect animals, but also to engage the public of their communities to take the lead in demanding action from authorities, governments, corporations and themselves so that together we can reduce the stress on endangered species and their habitats.
In short, EAZA believes that the future of nature depends on all of us; and that EAZA zoos and aquariums can act as a portal for their local communities into conservation across the world.
The EAZA Conservation Database is an online tool to facilitate communication on conservation efforts of our members within as well as outside of the zoo and aquarium community. Each month we highlight one of the projects or activities from the database.
Since 2015, Knowsley Safari Park, in collaboration with Cotswold Wildlife Park and Prague Zoo, have been involved in the conservation of wild Bactrian camels (Camelus ferus), which are Critically Endangered and genetically distinct from the domestic species popular in zoos.
In addition to funding and ex situ education, they signed a five-year memorandum of understanding to co-operate with the Wild Camel Protection Foundation on the management of captive wild camels at the Wild Camel Breeding Centre in Mongolia. Among other things, they offer practical husbandry and veterinary support to the centre that breeds wild individuals in human care. They train herders to tag calves, implement body condition scoring and parasitology checks.
This herd may be crucial to the future of the species as a source of individuals for reintroduction projects, for instance.