Thursday, November 4, 2010

Bristol Zoo Gardens scoops top awards at British Zoo “Oscars”

Photo credit: Schwitzer and Bristol Zoo Gardens

Bristol Zoo Gardens has received two top awards from the British zoo community at a prestigious awards ceremony.

The Zoo has won ‘best research project’ and ‘best conservation breeding project’ in the annual British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) awards.

The conservation breeding award has been given for the Zoo’s successful breeding of a colony of seven endangered Livingstone’s fruit bats, and its links to the Zoo’s fruit bat conservation project in the Comoro Islands.

The research project award was given for the Zoo’s study into the effects of fruit protein on primate communities in Madagascar and the neotropics.

Commendations were also awarded to Bristol Zoo for three of its education campaigns, the launch of a study into the world’s most endangered primates, its Bangless Bonfire Night events and for its environmental sustainability manifesto.

The awards were presented at a prestigious ceremony at Paignton Zoo Environmental Park in Devon, attended by more than 100 people last night (Wednesday, November 3).

Director of Bristol Zoo, Dr Bryan Carroll, said: “It’s wonderful to receive these awards, they highlight the Zoo’s efforts in research and conservation breeding which is an extremely important part of what we do. These awards also show that the zoo community recognises the dedication and hard work that goes on at Bristol and other British zoos every day.”

Held annually for over a decade, the BIAZA awards recognise outstanding contributions and achievements in the fields of wildlife conservation, advances in animal welfare and husbandry, marketing, PR, education, research, and enclosure design.

Dr Miranda Stevenson, Director of BIAZA said: “The award-winning programmes showcased through these awards demonstrate the huge investment of energy and resources made by our leading zoos to improve animal welfare and raise environmental awareness.

“These awards recognise and celebrate the vital contributions that our members are making to conservation and education each year. Equally, they are standard bearers for excellence in animal husbandry and welfare. We congratulate all the winners on their achievement.”

BIAZA is a conservation, education and scientific wildlife charity, which acts as the principal professional body representing the responsible zoo and aquarium community in the UK and Ireland.

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