We would like to share with all of you some news coming out of a school in Southwest Germany. Ninth-grade students from this school have sent us a project on which they were working on for a long time. This project was centered around Tenerife, and Loro Parque as the main attraction on the island. We are very pleased to know that our message is reaching everyone, and that they see us as an example of modern zoo. We would like to thank all students and their teachers for having made a great effort on this excellent work. This gives us motivation to keep on in our work for the care and protection of animals.
Today we are celebrating Halloween with a very special present for the animals who live in Loro Parque: their favorite food in eye-catching and intriguing pumpkins, which surprise both the park inhabitants and the visitors. This tasty decor has been placed in our exhibitions of the titi monkeys, gorillas, chimpanzees and meerkats, where the animals are being surprised with a feast while carefully discovering the carved figures in each pumpkin. With this type of activities, the keepers of the park broaden the specific environmental enrichment programs for each species in a playful way, as usual.
Although Halloween is from the Celtic culture, it is celebrated throughout the Anglo-Saxos countries and, recently, in other countries like Spain. We have decided to share this special day with the visitors, so they can discover the behavior of the animals with this experience that gives them new sensory stimuli. An opportunity to enjoy the best Halloween at the Embassy of the Wild Animals with no “trick or treat”.
Loro Parque is happy to celebrate the perfect health and size of the sandbar sharks, which were born in March this year in the aquarium of the Best Zoo in Europe and second in the world, according to TripAdvisor.
Abel, Airam, Lian and Juan, healthy and strong, have successfully turned five months of age – the most delicate and risky period for their species. These baby sharks have passed their first blood test after which a more specific and complete diet is created by their keepers.
Even so, the baby sharks begin to make preference for hake and squid while they find themselves in a habitat perfectly adapted to their needs including in recreating a natural light during the day and a dim moonlight at night. Even the temperature of the water is maintained at a certain level based on the season of the year.
These four baby sandbar sharks, just like the other representatives of their species, are true ambassadors for the protection of their own species in the oceans and the seas. These animals are in an elevated risk due the damaging human activities. As is known, the continued exploitation of the natural resources puts at risk many species of animals, among them sharks that are now facing extinction after having habituated our planet for over 400 million years.
Every year more than 100 million sharks are caught and killed at sea. According to the data from World Health Organization (WHO), each year about 600.000 tons of sharks are thrown away as a useless product. Currently, 11 species already appear on the International Red List of Endangered Species, among them the sandbar shark.
Therefore, Loro Parque together with Loro Parque Fundación puts forth the efforts to raise awareness about the importance of the responsible and sustainable use of natural resources and conservation of the biodiversity among more than million visitors that come to Loro Parque every year.
Loro Parque strengthens its commitment to research by hosting the first non-invasive tagging test on cetaceans by placing an innovative belt at the end Keto’s tail.
This pioneering study, conducted today in OrcaOcean by Icelandic and Danish scientists, consists in confirming the viability of the device and verifying that it does not create any disturbance on animals’ skin. The final goal of this procedure is to mark humpback whales in the wild.
Methodically, the concept features a belt placed at the animal’s tail that includes a number of sensors to measure basic parametres. This will provide data for further studies on geolocation, feeding behaviours and vertical movements of the animal and many other aspects.
Furthermore, these innovative “tagging” will be capturing and processing unique oceanographic data. This data will then be used to evaluate certain issues related to climate change and the main objective of the effort is to set up a network of sensors using humpback whales in different locations around the world. This unique tool will allow learning more about both their biology and obtain information about the climate on a global scale.
The results of the test performed on the orca Keto have been satisfying: it has not caused any problem on animal’s skin and it has been ascertained that it does not affect the movement of the animal – the innovative material of the belt is flexible, impermeable and does not create friction.
As the success of the test in Loro Parque has been confirmed, the scientists will perform the tagging of two humpback whales in Iceland, whose collected information will be used to know more about the migration processes of these cetaceans.
Dr. Javier Almunia, Deputy Director of Loro Parque Fundación, and Rafael Sánchez, Head Trainer of OrcaOcean, viewed positively the initial viability of a non-invasive marking system in comparison to the traditional tagging, in which harpoons are used that cause discomfort and potential injuries to the animal.
Without this kind of tests, it would not be possible to determine that the design is appropriate for use. Therefore, it has been noted that Loro Parque’s orcas contribute to scientific research and to data gathering that benefit cetaceans in the wild, performing a role of ambassadors of their species in the nature.
The interesting studies that are carried out at the prestigious Max-Planck-Institute, which has an investigation centre at Animal Embassy in Loro Parque and collaborates in research with Loro Parque Fundación.
We wish to calm all the people worried about Morgan and therefore, share these images with you. You can see that Morgan is doing perfectly well.
Morgan does not have any health problem and she certainly hasn’t tried to kill herself as some, apparent “animal lovers” like to put it. They only affirm their ignorance with these kind of statements.
Today, as on all other days, Morgan is doing well swimming with the rest of the group.
From Loro Parque, we want to share the emotional inauguration of the amazing Aviaries of South America, as well as the new home of our adorable Red Panda couple. We have prepared a short video of this very special day.
Loro Parque Fundación has recently achieved a new international success in its conservation and protection labour in nature. This week nine specimens of Lear’s macaw, born and raised in Tenerife, were shipped to its native Brazil to reunite with their companions. It is the most significant repatriation ever made to Brazil of these critically endangered macaws thanks to Loro Parque Fundación’s breeding centre after ten years participating in an international programme for their preservation. On February 24th, specimens will be welcomed by “Foz de Iguaçu” birds’ park’s technical manager, Dr. Yara Barros, accompanied by Juan Villalba-Macías, coordinator of Bioparque M’Boricúa and also a member of Loro Parque Fundación.
This initiative started in 2006 due to a request from the Government of Brazil to Loro Parque to bring its expertise in breeding and conservation of this species. Loro Parque Fundación was chosen for this mission due to its other notable successes in other rearing projects, in particular, with Spix’ macaws. In 2001, this species became extinct in nature and it survives in captivity thanks to the conservation programme initiated in 1990, in which Loro Parque Fundación had a key role, successfully breeding this species and contributing with USD 726.000 to the programme in Brazil.
Responding to the request, Loro Parque Fundación received four Lear’s macaw specimens from the Brazilian Government in 2006 and, during the next decade, the foundation was able to breed 36 hatchlings. This marks the highest breeding rate for this species worldwide. Furthermore, Loro Parque Fundación supports local awareness-raising actions among communities of this bird’s natural habitat, having invested in this conservation project USD 387.000. Loro Parque Fundación’s significant participation in this international project has allowed for this species’ population growth in nature, counting 1.200 Lear’s macaws compared to 242 specimens registered in 2001. This success has been acknowledged by International Union for Conservation of Nature who saw it fit to make a decision to lower this species’ threat level from critically endangered to endangered.
Regarding Spix’ macaws, Loro Parque Fundación first returned, in 1997, all specimens’ ownership in its facilities to the Brazilian Government. Finally, in 2002, the foundation shipped all specimens at its disposal to Brazil, thus allowing the organisations like Brazilian Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources or Chico Mendes Institute for Conservation of Biodiversity to take advantage of Loro Parque’s expertise in “blue macaws” breeding to reintroduce this species in its natural environment.
Since 1994, this foundation has centred its work in protecting the environment through international projects. Only in South America, Loro Parque Fundación participates in 58 projects, having invested up till now USD 6.409.005. Pillars of its activity are based on rescue, conservation and investigation, as well as carrying out education campaigns to raise awareness about menaces that threaten biodiversity.