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 2010, Plzen zoo and its partners have launched a joint Czech–German research project, with financial support from the European Regional Development Fund, focusing on Corncrake (Crex crex) Conservation in Czech Republic, where the species - living in cultivated meadows and waterlogged areas - is listed as critically endangered.
The project aims at studying the little-known biological aspects of these birds, as well as quantitatively monitoring the population with satellite telemetry and increasing collaboration with farmers to find new areas of management for the protection of this species.
The results so far showed that tagged birds stayed in restricted areas until migration if some suitable habitat remained. Where meadows were harvested very early, the males left. Delayed mowing or leaving patches of uncut meadow could thus be a compromise to ensure good agricultural production and the breeding biology of this species.