Wildlife World Zoo, Aquarium & Safari Park has announced the recipients of its Annual Animal Care & Conservation Awards.
Over the past three decades, Wildlife World has contributed tens of thousands of dollars, as well as thousands more as in-kind support and staff expertise, to dozens of local, national and international organizations working on habitat restoration and wildlife conservation all over the globe. These financial awards of $1,000 to $10,000 were created to recognize worthy efforts in field conservation, public display and education, and basic research designed to preserve the planet and inspire future generations to care about wildlife and wild places.
In addition to the main awards, Wildlife World Zoo, Aquarium & Safari Park, along with the Kimmerle family at Sanderson Ford, presented the leaders of The Peninsular Pronghorn Recovery Program with a much-needed F250 pickup truck.
Peninsular pronghorn are critically endangered. Once numbering in the thousands, today approximately 150 survive in the wild.
“We are extremely grateful for the decades of support from our guests and friends of the zoo, like the Kimmerle family, which make donations like this possible,” said Mickey Ollson, the zoo’s director.
The recipients include:
The Peninsular Pronghorn Recovery Program
The Peninsular Pronghorn Recovery Program is directed by the NGO Espacios Naturals y Dessarrollo Sustenable and leads the most successful conservation efforts in the recovery of the peninsular pronghorn, an endangered terrestrial mammal. Their dedication has managed to reverse the declining trend in the number of individuals of this unique subspecies in the world and lay the foundation for the sustainable recovery of its original habitat on the Baja California Peninsula. Natural spaces and sustainable development A. C. (ENDESU) was created with the mission of conserving and promoting the sustainable use of natural resources in Mexico, for the value they represent for future generations. For more information, visit endesu.org.mx/desarrollo-sustentable.
Marine Mammal Center
The Marine Mammal Center’s mission is to expand knowledge about marine mammals — their health and that of their ocean environment — and to inspire their global conservation. Its core work is the rescue and rehabilitation of sick and injured marine mammals, supported by state-of-the-art animal care and research facilities, a corps of dedicated volunteers and an engaged community. For more information, visit marinemammalcenter.org.
Zoological Association of America, Cheetah Conservation Fund
The Zoological Association of America, Cheetah Conservation Fund saves cheetahs and other endangered species around the world. Together with direct support programs of accredited members, ZAA directs vital conservation dollars to aid in the survival of many keystone species and a number of other threatened or endangered species on all seven continents. For more information, visit zaa.org.
The International Crane Foundation commits to a future where all crane species are secure — a future where people cooperate to protect and restore wild populations and their ecosystems. These efforts sustain the places where cranes live, to the benefit of countless other species. For more information, savingcranes.org.
Founded in 1976 in Southern California by the late Alan Richard Mootnick, The Gibbon Conservation Center is the only facility in the world devoted exclusively to gibbons, an increasingly rare ape. It works for the endangered gibbons’ benefit through conservation, propagation and study, and by teaching people about them. GCC houses nearly 40 gibbons, among them five of the 19 living species. For more information, visit gibboncenter.org.
The International Rhino Foundation is dedicated to the survival of the world’s rhino species through conservation and research. The IRF provides the technical (scientific, educational and administrative) and financial resources necessary to facilitate the conservation of rhinos. For more information, visit rhinos-irf.org.
Sahara Conservation Fund
The Sahara Conservation Fund is a dynamic organization with a unique mission: The conservation of the wildlife of the Sahara and its bordering Sahelian grasslands. Its vision is of a Sahara that is well conserved and where ecological processes function naturally, with plants and animals existing in healthy numbers across their historical range; a Sahara that benefits all its inhabitants and where support for its conservation comes from stakeholders across all sectors of society. For more information, visit saharaconservation.org.
Turtle Survival Alliance
Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA) saves endangered and threatened turtles and tortoise throughout the world. TSA is an action-oriented global partnership that is committed to zero turtle extinctions in the 21st century. For more information, visit turtlesurvival.org.
Everything the Audubon Nature Institute does comes back to conservation. The institute wants to instill in its visitors an appreciation for the natural world to make a difference for the world’s wildlife, and to pioneer innovative partnerships that make its efforts stronger. It measures its success by the number of species whose numbers are increasing rather than declining. For more information, visit audubonnatureinstitute.org/conservation.
Conservation Breeding Specialist Group
The Conservation Breeding Special Group’s mission is to save threatened species by increasing the effectiveness of conservation efforts worldwide. For over 30 years, CBSG has accomplished this by using scientifically sound, collaborative processes that bring together people with diverse perspectives and knowledge to catalyze positive conservation change. CBSG provides species conservation planning expertise to governments, specialist groups, zoos and aquariums, and other wildlife organizations. For more information, visit cbsg.org.
As a USDA-licensed, private institution accredited by the Zoological Association of America and the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks & Aquariums, Wildlife World Zoo, Aquarium & Safari Park receives zero taxpayer funding. No tax dollars have ever been spent to build or operate Wildlife World in its nearly 35-year history.
Wildlife World Zoo, Aquarium & Safari Park is located at 16501 W. Northern Avenue, Litchfield Park, at the southeast corner of State Route 303 and Northern Avenue.
It is open seven days a week, 365 days a year, including all holidays. Zoo exhibits are open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (last zoo admission is at 4:30 p.m.). Aquarium exhibits are open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Admission includes access to the zoo, aquarium and safari park.
For more information, call 623-935-WILD (9453). Visit Facebook, Instagram or Twitter @zoowildlife, and wildlifeworld.com.