The Loro Parque Foundation wants to extend the moratorium on medium frequency military sonar to the whole region of Macaronesia

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The Loro Parque Foundation announced today, Thursday October 25, during the press conference to present the XIV International Forum for Nature Conservation, its intention to push for the extension on the moratorium on medium frequency military sonar in the Canary Islands to cover the whole of Macaronesia.  This initiative, which has the unanimous support of the Government of the Canary Islands and MEPs from the European Outermost Regions, is an important step towards the protection of cetaceans in the region.

Present at the event were the Deputy Minister for the Environment of the Government of the Canary Islands Blanca Delia Pérez, the President of the Spanish Committee of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Juan Antonio López, and the President of Loro Parque Foundation Christoph Kiessling.  This year the forum, which discusses the effects of climate change and exotic and invasive species in the marine environment, is being hosted by the Foundation at the Hotel Botánico in Puerto de La Cruz.

The meeting was the perfect occasion for the announcement of a project that will protect cetaceans from the changes in behaviour generated by exposure to sonar and will consequently result in the reduction of injuries and strandings directly related to naval manoeuvres in Macaronesian waters.

Proven success in the Canary Islands.

After the link between cetacean strandings and various other injuries with naval manoeuvres and sonar noise became evident, and following the recommendation of a European Parliament resolution, the Spanish Government established a moratorium on the use of naval sonar in the Canary Islands in November 2004.  During the 14 years since this decision was taken, there have been no atypical mass strandings on the Islands, which proves its effectiveness as a mitigation measure.

The expansion of the moratorium to the rest of the countries in the region would mean the effective protection of more than 3.5 million square kilometres, which represents 85 per cent of this hot spot of biodiversity for cetaceans that is the Macaronesian region.

An update on the progress of Morgan’s calf

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We are pleased to report that Morgan’s calf is continuing to gain weight and is growing stronger every day. Morgan’s milk production has been lower than what is required to meet the young calf’s nutritional needs, so it has been necessary to introduce regular bottle feeding. That decision is already showing positive results and the team of experts who are monitoring the calf around the clock are encouraged by its physical and mental progress as the young orca swims and plays.

While we would rather see Morgan able to breastfeed, the health and wellbeing of the calf are the top priority. In the wild, orca calves do not survive if their mothers are unable to produce enough milk.

Fortunately – thanks to our world-leading facilities, vets, and consultants – we can provide the calf with a specialized and nutritious formula consisting of milk, blended fish, and other essential vitamins and ingredients that are combined with the milk Morgan is able to produce. The formula has been developed by marine mammal veterinarians and animal nutritionists and it is clear that the calf is feeling the benefits.

In the interests of safety for mother, calf, and the experts assisting them, while bottle feeding takes place the pair are currently in different pools immediately adjacent to one another. Both mother and calf show signs they are relaxed and comfortable while this period of bottle feeding takes place.

We offer our heartfelt thanks once again for the continued messages of support. The team will continue to provide updates as and when we have new information.

Loro Parque welcomes the American Humane Association Board of Directors

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Loro Parque has received, this morning, Thursday October 11, the Board of Directors and some collaborators of the American Humane Association, who have come to the Islands directly from the U.S. to get to know the facilities of the zoo recognised as the best in the world according to TripAdvisor.

The delegation, headed by its CEO and president, Dr. Robin Ganzert, toured the different exhibitions and were able to enjoy the presentations of the orcas and dolphins offered by the Parque, in addition to learning first hand the work of the Loro Parque Foundation in conservation matters thanks to a relaxed talk with its director Dr. Javier Almunia.

Dr. Ganzert was accompanied by the famous actress and producer Barbara Niven, as well as by the well-known Mrs. Candy Spelling, author and widow of the famous Hollywood producer Aaron Spelling. Their marriage gave birth to two children, actor Randy Gene Spelling and Victoria Davey (Tori) Spelling, known for appearing in several Aaron Spelling productions, the most notable being Beverly Hills 90210.

Also with them were John Payne, president of the Board of Directors – with over 33 years of experience in the animal care industry and founder of Compassion-First Pet Hospitals, a group of highly reputable veterinary hospitals – and Dawn Assenzio, secretary of the Board and organiser of the famous K-9 Battle Buddies, an event that honours the bravery and courage of military dogs and their handlers.

Wellbeing certificate

In 2017, this prestigious entity certified the positive welfare status of all the animals in Loro Parque, which became the first zoo in Europe to achieve this standard. Amongst the many aspects taken into consideration, the excellent state of health and housing; positive social interactions within animal groups, and between animals and carers; safe environments, with appropriate lighting and sound levels, good air quality and thermoregulation; and evidence of preparedness and protocols in place to prevent and manage medical emergencies were highlighted.

American Humane, an association with more than 140 years of experience, focuses its efforts on ensuring the welfare of animals through the evaluation of various parameters of the life of the specimens that inhabit zoos, aquariums and centres of conservation around the world. It’s also responsible for the famous phrase “No animal has been harmed during the filming of this film”, which appears in Hollywood feature films thanks to its ‘Humane Hollywood’ programme, which ensures the welfare of all animals in productions.

The IX Loro Parque Foundation Parrot Congress, a resounding success

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A resounding success: that is the summary of the IX Parrot Congress organised by the Loro Parque Foundation and held last week in Tenerife, where 850 congress participants of 47 different nationalities met.  The experience, unique in the world, counted on the participation of the most recognised experts in the field worldwide.

This record number of nationalities present has allowed the interaction of the congress participants with various professionals and experts in different scientific areas, native to each continent where the Loro Parque Foundation develops multiple conservation projects among which are those that have managed to save nine parrot species from extinction.  Up to now the Loro Parque Foundation has donated over 18 million dollars to support conservation projects for endangered species around the world.

During the Congress some of the most successful results obtained so far by the projects carried out by the Foundation were detailed, which show that the protection of parrot species also favours the protection of other species.  Thus, thanks to these projects it has even been possible to identify new species of fauna -especially reptiles- as well as flora.

A total of 22 international speakers, whose conferences were simultaneously translated into four languages, have contributed their experiences and knowledge throughout this week in which, in addition to talks, many other actions were carried out.  This year, in response to an unprecedented demand, intensive workshops were given in the days following the Congress, in which different experts have offered direct training in different fields linked to the world of conservation.

This Congress, unique in the world due to its nature and extraordinary convocation capacity, has moved some 1,000 people around the Island, congress attendees and their companions, who have been able to enjoy the excellence of the climate of Puerto de la Cruz as well as the biodiversity of the Canary Islands.  The social programme of the convention also included an impressive typical Canarian dinner in the Plaza del Palacio Municipal in La Orotava; another, no less important, in the Auditorium of Santa Cruz de Tenerife; a visit to the Island of Gran Canaria to enjoy the Poema del Mar Aquarium, and, finally, a memorable Gala Dinner in the gardens of the Botánico Hotel.

Big week in Loro Parque

 As part of the celebration of the IX Parrot Congress, Loro Parque has also inaugurated its new installation of Pygmy Hippos.  The event was enjoyed by a large number of congress attendees, as well as numerous local authorities and representatives of the private sector, who were able to observe up-close an unparalleled naturalised space designed especially by the Park’s team for the new arrivals.

In addition, also as part of the Congress programme, the Loro Parque Foundation has awarded the prestigious Gorilla Prize to Rosemary Low, a passionate defender of parrots who has dedicated her life to these birds through breeding and conservation.  This year saw the fifteenth edition of this award, which emphasises environmental responsibility, taking into account strategies and actions to conserve biodiversity and promote the sustainable use of resources.

Loro Parque Foundation awards the best End-of-Graduate Studies in Science at the University of La Laguna

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The Loro Parque Foundation, a non-profit organisation whose objectives include the conservation of endangered species and their habitats, the promotion of scientific research aimed at the conservation of biodiversity and education and awareness of threats affecting the planet, sponsors the Awards of the Faculty of Sciences of the University of La Laguna to the best End of Grade Work (TFG) presented during the academic year 2017-18, with the aim of stimulating educational excellence and encouraging efforts related to the conservation of both terrestrial and marine biodiversity, as well as protection and environmental sustainability.

Applications must be submitted to the Secretary of the Faculty of Sciences in writing or by e-mail addressed to the Secretary of the Faculty of Sciences (secretci@ull.edu.es), expressing interest in participating in this competition, indicating the name of the author of the TFG, as well its title. The deadline for submission will be Monday 29 October, 2018 at 2pm.

Two groups of four prizes will be awarded.  On the one hand, the best TFGs presented in Biology  will be awarded, and on the other in the degrees of Environmental Sciences, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics.  In all cases, the prize amounts will be as follows: a first prize of €1,200, a second prize of €800, a third prize of €600 and a fourth prize of €400. The awards will be presented at a public event as part of the activities organised at the Faculty of Science to celebrate the feast of its patron.

In the case of the Biology awards, any of those registered in the academic year 2017-2018 will be eligible. In the case of the Environmental Sciences, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics, to be eligible for the competition the papers presented should deal with the following themes: conservation and biodiversity of the terrestrial and marine environment; evaluation and management of the natural environment; environmental sustainability, environmental protection and environmental education; and water and waste management.

  Regulations: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1vqYUQyai7p-MmTtkPAEBC01yR5gw2HYy/view

An update on the newborn calf of the orca Morgan

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It’s now just over a week since Morgan gave birth and the entire team of carers, veterinarians, and international experts who have been monitoring the situation are delighted with the calf’s progress. The primary focus continues to be ensuring that the calf is getting all the nourishment it needs and the team has been concerned that Morgan’s milk production has been lower than required.

While natural breastfeeding is always the preferred option, nothing is more important than the wellbeing of the animals in our care – so the veterinary team has stepped in to assist at times by temporarily bottle feeding the calf.

Despite continuous attempts to help Morgan feed naturally, her milk production remains low. As a result, the only option has been to move the calf over to regular bottle feeds. Thanks to Loro Parque’s world-leading facilities and the help of the world’s top experts, we are able add the small amount of milk that Morgan is producing daily to the bottled formula feed, which is provided in a special dedicated medical pool. Using Morgan’s milk helps enrich each meal the calf receives and provides the vital antibodies that aid the development of its immune system.

Despite the challenges in breastfeeding, the bond between mother and calf continues to grow and Morgan is demonstrating exemplary maternal instincts as she swims alongside her calf at all times they are together.

We know from the many messages of support we continue to receive that many of you are closely following this news, so we will keep providing updates as and when we have new information.