Meet our baby penguins: save endangered vultures
Friday 3 September 2010
This weekend, visitors to ZSL London Zoo can win a chance to meet our baby penguins – simply by donating to a good cause.
On 4 and 5 September, ZSL will be celebrating Vulture Awareness Day and keepers will be out in force to help raise money for ZSL’s vulture conservation work in India.
They will be selling raffle tickets, with the top prize being an exclusive opportunity to go behind the scenes and meet the Zoo’s newborn penguins. Two runners up will also win special money-can’t-buy animal encounters.
On both days Zoo visitors will also be able watch three special vulture themed animal demonstrations, including a special Animals in Action display starring Guido the American black vulture.
Plight of wild Asian vultures
In the last decade vast numbers of vultures have been wiped out across Asia. The three main species affected have lost 98% of their original numbers. The white backed vulture has been reduced from 40 million birds to just 11 thousand and the decline is still happening.
The reason for this mass extermination is a drug used by cattle farmers called Diclofenac, which the vultures consume when the cattle die. Just a small amount of this drug can kill hundreds of vultures.
ZSL is working with many international organisations and local governments to halt this decline. We have encouraged governments to ban the manufacture of Diclofenac. We have provided funding and expertise to set up breeding facilities. We have provided veterinary care in situ to assist local communities.
You can help the plight of these important birds by joining us this weekend and supporting vulture awareness weekend.
All donations will go directly to ZSL vulture field conservation work.
Special Vulture Awareness Day activities
12 pm - Animals in Action
With that in mind our Animal Activities team will be presenting a special ‘Animals in Action’ display with Guido the American black vulture as the star of the show.
You will be able to see Guido in action and find out about the Vulture conservation work ZSL is directly involved in. This will be followed by a presentation all about ZSL's work in India with one of our keepers. We will also be collecting donations towards ZSL’s continued work with vultures in the wild.
3pm - African Aviary Vulture Feed
See our Vultures being fed and hear all about the international conservation work aiding the declining population of Indian Vultures. We will also be collecting donations towards ZSL’s continued work with vultures in the wild.
3:30pm - Predatory Bird show
Keepers will discuss the difference between old world and new world vultures as well as highlighting the plight of vultures in India. There will be the opportunity to be photographed alongside one of the stars of the show. We will also be collecting donations towards ZSL’s continued work with vultures in the wild.