ZOO Alive The official magazine of Auckland Zoo SPRING 2010 // $3.00 Creating a unique NZ experience New tamarin exhibit in ‘The Tropics’ Celebrating Kashin Spring Events Guide Friends at the Zoo Friends of all ages welcome 364 days a year If you think you need a troop of little monkeys in tow to justify regular zookeepers recognise you because you’re wearing a membership pass visits to the Zoo, think again! – so there’s always a chance that you could be singled out for some VIP treatment! While Auckland’s most unique and dynamic park is a fantastic place to bring the kids, with its diverse wildlife, incredible gardens, and great cafes If you’re already a Friend of the Zoo, you might like to gift a membership to and events, Auckland Zoo also offers singles, couples, working or retired a friend or family member – the ultimate birthday or Christmas present. folk an inspiring place to escape into nature. The Zoo offers membership options for students, seniors, singles, couples, A Friends of the Zoo annual membership gives you unlimited day-time and families of all sizes. If you’re not yet a Friend of the Zoo but would like entry 364 days a year, discounted entry to evening events like our to be, or would like more information, phone our friendly staff on 09-360 outstanding summer ZooMusic series, gift shop and cafe discounts and 3805, email email@example.com, or visit other exclusive Friends’ offers. You are posted complimentary copies of www.aucklandzoo.co.nz Zoo Alive, and receive a monthly e-newsletter to keep you up-to-date with With exciting new developments in progress, and an action-packed our latest news and activities. calendar of events over spring and summer, now’s the perfect time to As a Friend of the Zoo, you’re considered part of our family. Our staff and join the Zoo family! 2 ZOOAlive Spring 10 COVER: Sub-Antarctic Dear Friends fur seal Orua will be one of over 60 native You can read more about this day on pages 4 and 5. Here, species to feature Zoo director, Jonathan Wilcken, also updates you about our in Auckland Zoo’s plans to get companion elephants for Burma as a start to New Zealand precinct building up to a sustainable herd, and brings you up to speed development, due to about our proposed plans to extend the elephant area. open in late 2011. See Welcome to our bumper Spring issue. story: back cover. If you’re reading Zoo Alive for first time, and are not yet a You’ll find it packed with news, latest exhibit developments, Friend of the Zoo, be sure to check out the story on page 2, NEW including a story on our exciting new NZ precinct, Te Wao outlining what this great membership programme offers. Nui, and an events guide outlining the great things we’ve got EDITION happening in the coming months that you’d be crazy to miss! Warm regards, Our thanks to all those of you who recently joined us to mark the passing of our much-loved elephant Kashin. It was a very special day – that helped to raise an impressive $20,000 to support the conservation of Asian elephants in the wild. EDITOR Auckland Zoo’s official newsletter Zoo Alive is printed on paper from a sustainable forest resource. It is published tri-annually (Spring, Summer and Autumn/Winter) and distributed free to Friends of the Zoo. The contents cannot be reproduced in whole or part without the permission of the publishers. EDITOR Dan’s walk on the wild side Jane Healy Taking some time out before the start of the Tri Nations series, All Black Dan Carter came in to the Zoo to go on a ZOOM tour. PHOTOGRAPHY Graham Meadows & Claire Vial A long-time Zoo fan, Dan spent an afternoon meeting the rhinos, lemurs and DESIGN & PRINTING Burma the elephant. “It was awesome – I’ll have to come back and bring some of the other boys,” he said. If you’d like to go on one of our ZOOM tours, where you get to go behind-the-scenes and meet some of your favourite animals, we’re offering you the chance to book a PMP Maxum is proud to provide sponsorship to Auckland Zoo to tour for two and bring two friends along for free before 24 September 2010! assist with the printing and design of this publication. Designer: Rory Birk (This special offer is only available to Friends of the Zoo). Address all enquiries to: For more information and to book, phone us on 360 4700 and say “FOTZ ZOOM”. The Editor, Zoo Alive, Auckland Zoo, Private Bag, Grey Lynn, Auckland Tel: 09-360-3804, Fax: 09-360-3818 firstname.lastname@example.org Lots of laughs with Rove www.aucklandzoo.co.nz Auckland Zoo is a member of the World Association of Zoos & Aquaria, and the Australasian organisation – Zoo Aquarium Association Auckland Zoo would like to thank the following sponsors and supporters: Comedian Rove McManus was in town for the enough to be able to feed them. International Comedy Festival earlier this year and as a zoo-lover (he’s a friend of Melbourne Zoo), he Pictured here with our male hippo Fudge, Rove says, popped in to visit us. “You have no idea how excited I am in this photo!” He also loves elephants, so enjoyed some quality time His favourite animals are hippos, so of course we took hanging out with Burma and her keepers. him to meet Faith and Fudge – he was even lucky Be our Friend online! You can follow us on Twitter, become an Auckland Zoo fan on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube, and view our photos on Flickr! As a Friend of the Zoo, receive our monthly Friends e-newsletter - bringing you the latest Zoo news and special Friends-only offers. To ensure you don’t miss out, make sure we have your correct email address. Simply email us at email@example.com so we can update your details. You can also contact us anytime at the above email or phone (09) 360-3805 during office hours. 3 ZOOAlive Spring 10 News From the Director Jonathan Wilcken We celebrate Kashin and work to continue her legacy A year on from the passing of our much-loved Zoo matriarch, elephant Kashin, Auckland Zoo staff and close to 3000 Aucklanders celebrated her life with a day of festivities that helped us to raise $20,000 to assist Asian elephants in the wild. Raised from paid admissions and the sale of elephant-related merchandise, this money goes to the Kashin Elephant Conservation Fund to enable us to Our plans for elephants continue our efforts protecting Asian elephants in the wild and restoring We know from having Kashin and Burma, just how deeply elephants connect Asian elephant habitat. with people and inspire them to care, and what extraordinarily powerful and effective conservation ambassadors they are. During her life, Kashin touched and inspired so many people. Along with Burma she also helped us to raise three quarters of a million dollars to It is Auckland Zoo’s mission to inspire such care in people; to develop in the support endangered animals in the wild, so having the day continue this community an understanding for and connection with wildlife, and to utilise legacy was a highly fitting tribute. our resources to effect wildlife conservation. As well as fun activities and encounters with our elephant Burma, the day It is why, with the total support of our Zoo Board, and Auckland City Council, offered visitors the opportunity to visit Kashin’s gravesite – a steep bush area that we’re working to source elephant companions for Burma, and to where she loved to walk with Burma and her keepers, that’s not normally establish a sustainable elephant breeding herd. open to the public. Initially we plan to bring in two elephants as companions for Burma, and as The mild winter’s day in late August brought a mix of sunshine and rain, a start to building up to a herd of 10 elephants. These elephants would come which, given Kashin’s love for water and splashing in puddles, was highly from another zoo or rescue and breeding centre, never from the wild. appropriate. On hearing about Burma’s situation, representatives of the Sri Lankan Just after a downpour, I watched a couple of young boys giggling with government have approached us about the possibility of sourcing elephants absolute delight as they jumped and splashed for all they were worth in from an elephant orphanage in Sri Lanka, and we’re now working through a large puddle in front of the elephant enclosure. whether this can be a viable option. The boys’ mother looked on enjoying the experience, it seemed, as much as Integral to having more elephants at Auckland Zoo is continuing to they did - simply getting them to empty out their water-logged gumboots support Asian elephants in wild. Through the Auckland Zoo Conservation once they’d had enough. A local it turned out, Caroline Mann explained they Fund, we’re already helping to protect elephants and restore wild habitat didn’t have far to go to get dry. Caroline also shared her excitement at the in Sumatra and Thailand, and are looking to increase this support for Zoo’s plans to get more elephants. elephants elsewhere in Asia. 4 ZOOAlive Spring 10 through the Zoo and up into its steeped forested areas. In fact, she’s walking between 8 km – 12km every day! Just how well Burma is, is testament to the love, care and skills of our elephant team and the close bonds they have with her. As long as she can be with other elephants, we believe Auckland Zoo remains the best home for Burma. We have a great set-up for Burma, and the capacity to hold three more elephants in the current ASB Elephant Clearing. But long-term, to build up to a herd of 10 elephants (bulls, cows, mothers, aunties and youngsters) our plan is to extend this area substantially to include 6 acres of varying terrain including grasslands, steep forested areas mud wallow and water. Here elephants will be able to live in a natural family structure in a spacious and interesting environment, with females and males having separate areas, as well as the ability to come together to breed. As evidenced by the 250 elephants born in zoos worldwide since 2005, when properly provided for, Elephant keeper Joel Milicich with Burma dur elephants in zoos breed very well indeed. ing an encounter at ASB Elephant Clearing. Proposed expansion of elephant area Adjacent to our current elephant enclosure is a large steep forested slope between the Zoo and West View Rd, used primarily by local residents, and another small strip of land beside Western Springs Lakeside Park. Combined, these two areas would give us the 6-acre expanse required to fully provide for a herd of up to 10 elephants. Making this land part of the Zoo requires a change to the Auckland District Plan. For this, Auckland City Council (owners of both the Zoo and park land) will be ensuring a full public consultation process so that everyone can have their say. Such a change would still see local residents being able to utilise a walking track on the northern steep slope. The terrain of the fenced off area here will remain fully protected, and elephants would use this area during the day under the supervision of their keepers. As for park visitors, they’ll be able to view these magnificent animals while out walking. Fully providing for elephants With our recognised world-class elephant programme and extraordinary You can access full details about our elephant plans, including viewing a team of elephant keepers and vets, Auckland Zoo has all the credentials to diagram of our proposed elephant clearing expansion and Council reports, by manage elephants, as well as the space and environment for them to live in visiting our website www.aucklandzoo.co.nz , which we’ll continue to update. and flourish. As soon as the consultation period and its process has been confirmed and/ or we have further news about elephants, we’ll be letting everyone know. For Since Kashin died, Burma continues to be monitored closely. She’s doing great now, if you do have any questions and want to speak with us directly, we’d love - sleeping well and enjoying stimulating days that include workouts and walks to hear from you, and invite you to contact us via the main Zoo phone line. Zoo welcomes ASB to Elephant Clearing Auckland Zoo is delighted to welcome its long- “We were all extremely saddened by the time friend and supporter, ASB, as the new death of Kashin on 24 August last year, and sponsor of the Zoo’s ASB Elephant Clearing. greatly miss Auckland’s gentle giant. ASB is ASB has a long association with elephants at delighted to be continuing our relationship Auckland Zoo. It funded then four-year-old with Auckland Zoo through supporting ASB elephant Kashin’s passage to Auckland Zoo Elephant Clearing,” says ASB Chief Community from her birthplace, northeast Thailand in Partnership Officer, Linley Wood. 1972, and named its elephant-themed savings “It’s great to see Burma so happy in her current account ‘Kashin’, which it launched back in environment, and ASB is now looking forward 1964 prior to her arrival. Kashin has continued to the proposed expansion at ASB Elephant to be the icon for ASB moneyboxes ever since. Clearing, and perhaps even the arrival of an Throughout the years, ASB has also contributed elephant friend or two for Burma in the not- to funding one of Kashin’s, and subsequently too-distant future. We’re also pleased to be Burma’s, greatest loves – food! supporting the Kashin Elephant Conservation It makes this perfect timing to announce the Fund, with money deposited into this ASB formalisation of this sponsorship, which will account being used to support elephants in see ASB partnered with elephants here at the wild,” says Ms Wood. Auckland Zoo into the future. Spring 10 ZOOAlive 5 News Conservation in action for red panda One of Auckland Zoo’s female red pandas, Khosuva, is about to relocate to Darjeeling Zoo in India, where she’ll be paired up with a male for breeding. In time, given successful breeding, the plan is for her offspring to be released into the wild. While Auckland Zoo has released many New Zealand native species into the wild, this exciting milestone of contributing to releasing an exotic species back into its natural habitat would be a first. Accompanying Khosuva on her flight to India, will be Auckland Zoo keeper Lauren Booth, who as well as settling Khosuva into her quarantine facility, will be gaining first-hand experience of how Auckland Zoo’s support for a red panda project is helping red pandas in the wild. On 30 September, seven-year-old female red panda Khosuva leaves for her endemic homeland, India, where she’ll become part of ‘Project Red Panda’ at Darjeeling Zoo. The Indian zoo has the only breed- for-release programme for red panda in their natural distribution zone. It’s hoped that, following successful breeding, Khosuva’s offspring will be released into the wild. As part of Auckland Zoo’s commitment to red panda Did you know? conservation, carnivore keeper Lauren Booth will Although they share the same name, the red panda (native to Nepal, India, travel with Khosuva and work with the Red Panda Bhutan, China, Laos and Myanmar) is not related to the giant panda. In Network Nepal – which the Zoo supports through the fact, the red panda is not related to any other animals, making it unique! Auckland Zoo Conservation Fund. The Zoo’s remaining red pandas, mum Maya and her daughter Amber, can expect new company later this year when a male red also get to spend time at Darjeeling Zoo and learn main threats to red panda is habitat destruction, so a panda will arrive from Darjeeling Zoo to breed about their breeding programme, which has had huge protected area is paramount to the survival of with Amber. success, so I’m expecting to bring back a wealth of this endangered species. knowledge,” says Lauren. “You can really see conservation in action here with ex “The forests where red panda live situ (in the zoo) meeting in situ (in the field). Khosuva will bring a valuable new bloodline to a very successful Darjeeling Zoo started ‘Project Red Panda’ in 1990 are the lungs of South Asia, and if breeding programme that releases red panda back with just four red panda and have had 55 (and these forests are intact and function into the wild – into an area we are working hard to counting) red panda born in captivity and four, to date, properly, just like human lungs, they grow and protect through the Red Panda Network released into the wild at Singhalila National Park, near can ensure a healthy life for animals, Nepal. All going well, her offspring’s release will be a Darjeeling Zoo. plants and people.” major conservation milestone for Auckland Zoo,” This release area is of particular importance as it RED PANDA NETWORK NEPAL says Lauren. forms part of the PIS (Panchthar-Ilam-Singhalila) You can learn more about the red panda during the “On my six week trip I’ll get to see first-hand the work Corridor – an 11,500km2 proposed red panda ‘Passport to Asia’ school holiday programme and at that is being done by the Red Panda Network Nepal conservation area the Red Panda Network Nepal is the Zoo’s special Red Panda Day on 25 September. in the forest and how we can help them further. I’ll working hard to achieve. Like many species, one of the (See Events Calendar, page 9) Snorkel settling in to new home One of Auckland Zoo’s female hippos, Snorkel, recently moved to her new home within the baboon enclosure in the heart of Hippo River. Both Snorkel and the baboons are gradually getting used to each other, with Snorkel looking like she’s enjoying her new digs, where she has a moat, mud wallow and flat grassed area. Born here in 1959, Snorkel is now in her 51st year, and much like any older person, is less mobile and agile than she once was, and now has restricted vision, so this easy-to- navigate area is ideal for her. Snorkel’s old enclosure is in an area that will become part of our New Zealand precinct development, Te Wao Nui, scheduled to open in September 2011. 6 ZOOAlive Spring 10 News Big cats are Aussie bound Pridelands team leader Nat Sullivan describes Lazarus as a ”very good-natured lion with a strong will. He’s currently head of our pride and has fathered two litters here already with both Kura and Amira”, says Nat. Two-year-old sibling tigers, male Jalur and female Cinta will leave us in late October when they move to Symbio Wildlife Park, located 45 minutes south of Sydney. Jalur and Cinta will be the first big cats at the wildlife park and will share a purpose-built enclosure within the 6 ha grounds. With no immediate plans to breed, they will for the present, represent their critically endangered species by being ‘ambassadors’ for their wild cousins. “Symbio is very lucky to be getting these two wonderful cats, who all of us will miss- including their parents and sibling Berani I am sure. With their wonderful personalities, they are sure to win over the Aussies in no time! Jalur is very congenial and takes after his Dad Oz and while Cinta can be suspicious of new people, she is very sweet natured –like her mum Molek,” says senior carnivore keeper Sandra Rice. “I’ll travel with the tigers and stay with them for a week to provide a familiar face and handover to their new keeper. It’ll be a hard day when I leave, but we’ll still have Cinta and Jalur’s brother Berani, and his parents Oz and Molek, to keep us on our toes!” PHOTO: Mark Attwooll The tigers will stop over at Mogo Zoo for a 30-day quarantine before heading to Symbio while Lazarus will have a direct flight to Cairns and complete his quarantine there, with Auckland Zoo keeper Niki Walker accompanying him. Three of our gorgeous big cats, lion Lazarus and tiger ‘cubs’ Jalur and Cinta, are preparing to move across the ditch to new homes as part The Zoo supports Sumatran tigers and the vulnerable African lion through of the Australasian captive breeding programme. the captive breeding programme and by providing in situ (in the field) financial support for tigers through 21st Century Tiger. Eight-year old male lion Lazarus has been at the Zoo for seven years and will call Cairns Wildlife Park home by Christmas. His move means he’ll Opportunities to say Bon Voyage! be able to breed with new ‘Aussie gals’ waiting for him in tropical North • The September school holidays ‘Passport to Asia’ programme. Queensland. It also opens the door for our remaining male lion Ngala to 25 September – 10 October. (see page 6 for details) assert his dominance over the pride – and hopefully start breeding with T • BIG CAT ENCOUNTERS: iger: 3pm (Saturday & Public Holidays) lionesses Kura and Amira. Lion: 1.45pm (Tuesday & Thursday) Makeover to bring penguins back to shore If you‘ve visited the Zoo recently you may have noticed something fishy at worked in other New Zealand zoos, Sea Lion and Penguin Shores. so we are hopeful”, says Native Fauna curator, Ian Fraser. The ‘top end’ of the enclosure is currently closed, but will reopen in December with an exciting new experience for visitors and animals alike. Sea Lion and Penguin Shores, which features over 20 New Zealand native A new entry way will greet you and lead you through the enclosure in a plant species, will form “The Coast” more natural flow. A traditional Kiwi ‘boatshed’ replaces the old large section of the New Zealand Precinct wooden gates between the sea lion / fur seals and native shorebirds. From when it opens in September 2011. It here, you’ll walk out into a larger and greatly improved beach area before will be home to sea lions and fur seals, following the path down to the underwater viewing window – which remains the white-faced heron, spotted shag, open during this redevelopment. dotterel, and room for up to 15 little blue penguins. The redevelopment significantly enhances the environment for the Zoo’s native shore birds, and also enables us to hold a greater number of birds. The Zoo currently has two penguins, They will have a larger beach and aviary, more perching areas, better access Coral and Marlin, living off-display. Come ineland rtesy of Mar PHOTO: Cou to nest boxes, an improved substrate, and enhanced water circulation in December, you can look forward to seeing their pool. this pair and another five penguins - females Jason and Randall and male Oz “We hope these improvements will encourage the little blue penguins from Napier’s Marineland, and three other to breed – something we have had limited success with in the past. Our recently rescued penguins, who, due to their research shows that similar environments to what we are creating here have injuries, are unable to return to the wild. Spring 10 ZOOAlive 7 events t ke tic All events support the Auckland Zoo Conservation Fund through a percentage of event proceeds and fundraising at each event. Unless otherwise stated, normal Zoo admission prices apply. SEPTEMBER t ke tic Conservation Week ke t Sunday, 12 September tic FR tic ke t EE 11am - 2pm To launch Conservation Week 2010, add your message about the International Year of Biodiversity to a giant kakapo et model on-site. You can also bring the family to meet the new TVNZ6 Meet the Locals presenter, James Reardon.ck ti FR EE Conservation Week – Discovery Days Wednesday, 15 and Thursday, 16 September FR tic ke t EE 10.00am - 2.00pm FR EE tic ke t The Zoo wants to show you simple things that you can do at home to discover more about some of our unique native animals. FR Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for more information. EE Comedy for Conservation Wednesday, 22 and Friday, 24 September ke t FR tic 6pm - 9pm. Cost: $30 per person EE tic ke t FR EE Join us for an evening with some of New Zealand’s top comedians including Jeremy Elwood, Dai Henwood and Ben Hurley when they perform at the Old Elephant House to help us raise funds for NZ native species conservation. Tickets are limited, so be quick! t ke tic Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for details and booking information. Red Panda Day Saturday 25 September FR ke t FR EE EEic t 10am - 2pm t ke tic To learn more about these amazing animals and how we are helping them in the wild, come along to our Red Panda Day. There will be fun activities, FR special red panda encounters, and a chance for you to be chosen to go on EE a behind-the-scenes encounter. tic ke t September School Holidays – Passport to Asia Monday 27 September - Sunday 10 October FR FR EE ke t EE tic 9.30am - 5.30pm Come along to the Zoo these school holidays to discover more about some of our animals from Asia – the Sumatran tiger, red panda and Asian elephant. There will also be special encounters, activities FR and interactive shows. E E Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for more information. t ke tic OCTOBER FR EE Africa Night Sunday 3 October t ke 4.30pm - 9pm. Cost: $90 per person tic FR EE Take an adventure through Africa without leaving town at Auckland Zoo’s exclusive Africa Night. A fundraiser for the Auckland Zoo Conservation Fund and Zoological Society, this event is one that you don’t want to miss! It includes a behind-the-scenes tour to see African animals, an African-themed dinner, auction and a talk. Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for details and booking information. FR EE 8 ZOOAlive 10 Spring t ke tic FR ke t EE ke t tic tic Day Event Night Event Family Event F Adult Event FREE for FOTZ Booking essential Major Event RE E OCTOBER tic ke t FR ke t EE Halloween – Creatures of the night tic Saturday FR EE 30 October ke t tic 6pm – 9pm (Rain date Sunday 31 October) FR FR Cost: To be confirmed. (FOTZ receive 20% discount) EE EE FR Halloween at the Zoo will be a little bit different this year – but just as fun! ThisEyear will have a “crea- E tures of the night” theme, but you can still expect lots of live entertainment, spot prizes and costume competitions. There’s a prize for the best recycled costume, so make sure you get dressed up! FR EE tic ke t Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for details and booking information. FR EE NOVEMBER tic ke t Orangutan Caring Week - Madju’s Market Day Saturday 6 November FR ke t EE 10am – 4pm tic As part of Orangutan Caring Week celebrations, we are celebrating orangutan Madju’s fifth birthday. There will be party activities and special orangutan encounters, plus a market with stalls selling F palm-oil free products, and celebrity chefs doing palm-oil free baking demonstrations. REE Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for more information. t ke tic Orangutan Caring Week - The Great Ape Race FR Thursday 11 November EE 6pm – 9pm ke t tic Cost: Adults $25, children $15 Get your team or family together for a race around the Zoo for a great cause – the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Project. Each team will FR be given a map covering the entire Zoo, some behind-the-scenes. EE No orienteering experience is necessary, and prizes and refreshments will be provided after the race. ke t tic Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for more information. FR EE DECEMBER tic ke t Christmas at the Zoo Friday 3 December FR EE 5.30pm - 8.30pm As Zoo Alive goes to print, we are planning a special Christmas event as a thank you to Friends of the Zoo! The finer details are still under wraps. If you’re a Friend, make sure you read November’s FOTZ FR e-newsletter and check the website for more information, and how to reserve your tickets. We’re also E planning special Christmas activities in December that all Zoo visitors can enjoy. ke E t tic . Visit www.aucklandzoo.co.nz for more information. t ke tic Wild Bean Cafe ZooMusic 2011 January – March 2011 t ke tic Wild Bean Cafe ZooMusic returns for summer 2011 serving up a sensational ‘concerts for conservation’ series. You can look forward to enjoying a stunning line-up of FR EE New Zealand’s best musical talents. We’ll be announcing our line-up in Zoo Alive’s December issue. Keep an eye on the website for details and how to get your tickets and FOTZ discount. F RE E F Spring 10RE ZOOAlive E 9 Feature Journey into Our American alligator Doris and her exhibit mates Dakota, Dixie, Georgia, and Tallulah have now settled into the Zoo’s new ‘Gator Territory’ in The Tropics. This exhibit is the first stop-off in an exciting development that, once complete, will take visitors on an extensive journey through the lush sub-tropics and tropics of the Americas. With the arrival of spring, these cold-blooded creatures from the swampy wetlands and everglades of the south-eastern United States are literally warming into action. As the Zoo’s Reptiles team leader Lana Judd explains, the alligators are coming out of brumation – a period when reptiles don’t eat and barely move, due to cold temperatures. “The higher the temperatures and sunshine hours, the more you’ll see these girls out on the beach and grass area sunning themselves, as well as active in the water. As we head into summer, our team is working American alligators . towards introducing a regular alligator encounter which will be a great home to five female The Tropics is now way for visitors to see and find out more about these stunning animals that were once so close to extinction,” says Lana. “It’ll definitely be one not to miss!” Primate species During November, Stage Two of The Tropics opens. Linked by a connecting boardwalk from the alligator exhibit, this area will be home to South America’s critically endangered cotton-top tamarin from Colombia, and the pygmy marmoset, whose home range extends from Ecuador through to Peru, Brazil and Bolivia. The world’s smallest living primate, the pygmy marmoset is a new species for Auckland Zoo. As part of the international captive breeding programme, a female pygmy marmoset is relocating from the UK’s Twycross Zoo, and a male from Mogo Zoo, Australia. Due to arrive in November, the pair won’t move in their new purpose-built area within the tamarin exhibit until after their required 30-day quarantine at our New Zealand Centre for Conservation Medicine (NZCCM). The boardwalk winding through this two-species exhibit creates an immersive experience for visitors, and part way through leads into a large under-cover area, with clear views out into the two animal exhibits. The tamarins have two distinct outside areas that are connected by high ropes – one encompassing a large moated island, and the other a large land area. “It’s a fantastic environment for them with the ropes as well as large trees providing the perfect climbing conditions for these very active New World monkeys,” says Primate team leader Courtney Eparvier. Aviary and Rainforest A large bird aviary between the alligator and primate exhibits parrots, the blue and gold macaw and scarlet macaw (currently located alongside Motions Creek within The Tropics, and an extension of The behind our Galapagos tortoise exhibit), with the rainforest remaining home Tropics boardwalk to link it up with our current rainforest, will complete to spider monkeys, golden lion tamarins, bonnet macaques, siamang this project in the coming year. The aviary will be home to South American gibbons, and otters. 10 ZOOAlive Spring 10 Creating stunning landscapes As the Zoo’s Curator of Horticulture, Hugo Baynes has been The Tropics has been how it has brought to life Motions Creek. responsible for the landscaping of The Tropics. He and his team “The sight and sound of Motions Creek in this part of the have worked closely with zoo keeping, architectural, engineering Zoo, previously hidden, has now really been opened up. This and construction staff to meet the challenge of fulfilling practical development has also put the spotlight on some magnificent requirements like animal and visitor needs, while creating existing trees. All up, the combined effects are stunning.” stunning tropical environments that will endure. In typical Hugo Baynes style, the passionate environmentalist has recycled many existing trees and plants from around the Zoo, and also sourced a number of tropical beauties externally for free! “The eight stunning dragon trees (Draceana draco) at the front of the alligator exhibit would have swallowed up the entire landscape budget on their own if we’d had to purchase them. Luckily, Auckland City Council offered these to us free of charge three years ago when they had to remove them from St Patrick’s Square for its $9m redevelopment. I had no appropriate use for them at the time, but I had a hunch I’d be able to make great dramatic use of them for a future project,” says Hugo. Hugo says as well as introducing new palm and cycad species to create diverse ecological environments, it’s also been important to make use of already growing New Zealand native species. Having worked at the Zoo for close to 20 years, Hugo believes one of the most surprising, but rewarding results from creating Riches from elephant dung Auckland Zoo’s WildZone gift shop has become the first retail outlet in $29.90, range from notebooks and greeting cards to photo frames, New Zealand to stock a stunning range of paper products made with sketchbooks and an elephant story book (telling the Maximus story). elephant dung, the production and sale of which is helping both people and elephants. Buying Maximus products from Auckland Zoo supports Maximus employees. Maximus also allocates a percentage of its revenue Produced in Sri Lanka, these Maximus products are improving the to the Millennium Elephant Foundation. To find out more visit livelihood of locals, mostly employed in rural areas, to spread the www.ecomaximus.co.uk word of this unique paper to bordering areas. As villagers reap the benefits of making a sustainable living from elephants, negative attitudes towards a species that has often threatened their livelihood, are changing. Instead of a threat, the elephant is being viewed as a valuable natural resource worth protecting. Human-elephant conflict remains the greatest threat to the survival of the Asian elephant. As habitat shrinks and becomes fragmented, people are more frequently coming into contact with elephants. Villagers protecting their crops are often killed by elephants, and elephants are often killed in retaliation. Maximus has certainly offered one solution. It started with just seven employees, using dung from six elephants from the not-for-profit Millennium Elephant Foundation near Kegalle. Today it employs over 150 locals and uses dung from the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage in Kegalle and from elephants passing by the Maximus factory in Dambulla, located on the edge of Minneriya National Park. “I’ve been lucky enough to visit Sri Lanka, meet some of the locals involved, and see how the paper is made. It’s a really cool process, and it’s great to think that this paper is being sent all around the world, and telling this very important story,” says Auckland Zoo elephant team leader, Andrew Coers. The Maximus products at WildZone, priced from just $3.50 to Spring 10 ZOOAlive 11 Tiaki “to look after, conserve, protect, save” Orangutan workshop highlights value of consumer pressure expansion of the industry, providing breathing room while the industry looks for ways to meet production demands and minimise adverse environmental impact. Join us to celebrate Orangutan Caring Week (6 - 13 November). I was recently invited to attend See this issue’s Events Calendar for details. and present a paper at the 2010 International Workshop on Orangutan Conservation, held on the Indonesian island of Bali. This important workshop brought together over 200 people from 13 different countries. Delegates represented government agencies, conservation groups, researchers, as well as the palm oil industry. It was very encouraging to see the participation of the industry, given the expansion of oil palm plantations remains the key threat to the survival of the orangutan. The United Nations predicts that by 2022, 98 per cent of Indonesian lowland rainforest will have gone to make way for oil palm plantations. With nowhere to live, hundreds of animal and plant species will also disappear. The struggle of the orangutan, genetically 97.4 per cent the same as us, is just the high profile symbol of this unfolding tragedy. Auckland Zoo, which has a reputation as a high profile advocate for wildlife, was the only captive facility invited to participate and present a paper at this workshop, a fantastic opportunity to share and learn about others’ efforts. Unsurprisingly, the workshop confirmed that the expansion of oil palm plantations into rainforest habitat remains the key threat to the orangutan. The Indonesian government is struggling to enforce wildlife and environmental protection laws. Additionally, the pressures of activities Auckland Zoo is working with its partners and suppliers to such as illegal logging, mining, hunting for food and the pet trade, are all become palm oil free. If you want to reduce or eliminate your taking their toll on orangutan numbers. palm oil consumption, use our Palm Oil Free Shopping Guide at www.aucklandzoo.co.nz. Also online or available at the Currently there are estimated to be fewer than 6,600 orangutans in Sumatra Zoo Info Centre, is our handy Palm Oil Ingredient Card that and somewhere between 30,000 - 50,000 in Borneo. Compare this to its tells you what names palm oil can be listed as so you can make three great ape cousins; gorilla - 95,000, chimpanzee - 299,000, and informed choices when you shop. humans - 6.5 billion. However, as conservation agencies on the ground continue their work, there is hope on the horizon. The palm oil industry is beginning to respond. Influenced by strong public opinion and consumers who now have a better Also understanding of the impact of palm oil production and are subsequently l be paikely to lm o reducing their consumption, the industry is now looking to improve its image co Vegeta ble il ntaini Oil, an stearyl”, ng the words ything and performance. words Anything cont “stearate, “c Lauryl S etyl, cetearyl aining the ul ”, Lauret phate (SLS), Sodium Dodec h Sulphate, S Sodium NaDS),yl Sulphate (Sodium Now is the time to keep this pressure on. The only hope for the orangutan l, anything Palm Oil Kerne words Stearoy Sodium or DS or l C and Ste Lactylate, Ste alcium containing the 422, 43 areth -20, Em areth -2 seems to lie with the palm oil industry itself, and the only people they will “Palmitate” or “Palmate”, Elaeis 0-36 ulsi 481-48 , 465-67, 47 fier ted Palm 3, 493- gunieensis, Hydra ecanoic 0- 5, 570 8, listen to is the consumer – you and me. s, Hexad Use ou r Palm Gylceride Shop Oil Fr or Palmitic Acid www.a ping Guide atee ucklan dzoo.c to grow palm o.nz By reducing our consumption we reduce the drive for unsustainable Destroying forests Borneo is oil in Sumatra and fast driving rainforest s extinction. species toward 12 ZOOAlive Spring 10 Burma the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) A clear cover (m embrane) over their eyes en ns are ables these Seals and sea lio marine mammals mammals . They are to swim with e their eyes open. They use their warm-blooded, giv whiskers to find and food or to help bir th to live babies them swim around on feed their babies the dark. They ev rocks in milk. Their bodies are en shut their nostrils when they d they are under covered in fur an gs. the water. breathe with lun Fur seals and sea New Zea seals’ - th lions are land fur ey have ‘eared dive dee seals seals and ear flaps per and walruses . True than any longer don’t. Th led look like – over 2 other fur seals cal e a hole on eir ears 00 metre s are es ar of their h the side can stay s, and ale al es ead. underwa M fem babi up to 11 ter for lls, d ps. minutes bu an pu before s, they hav e to com c ow alled als e up c f se Seals and sea lio ns are for air! are po s is n rou on eat meat New A g ea li y. I carnivores – they s on d penguins. or col on , like fish, squid, an da eas water – it all alle ing s as a They don’t drink Z c ed h ith s from their food. bre ull come e b oup w . on gr les ily ma fam of fe lled s a lot s is c Th i m. are d fur seals ea ea ah New Zealan yers of fur have two la r fur close to – underwea lla ep them the skin to ke a nger fur like warm and lo er the top nd nd a wetsuit ov u dry. Fur to keep them ce killed seals were on Before seal for their fur. f f What’s the word? hunting was banned in New Zealan d rs rs the 1900s, Pinniped (sounds like pin-i-ped) fur seals alm os t Seals, sea lions and walruses are part of the pinniped . be came extinct family. Pinniped means ‘fin foot’. Instead of four legs eall ea they have four flippers (like fins) that help them swim. The back flippers on fur seals, sea lions and walruses turn forward to help them walk on land. Pinnipeds have five fingers or toes in their flippers. JOKE Q.Why do seals Ask a keeper swim in salt water? A. Because pepper water makes What animals live at Sea Lion Shores? them sneeze! Keeper Joel Milicich: “Here at Auckland Zoo we have two You can help New Zealand fur seals, one sub-Antarctic fur seal and two Californian sea lions. Kaiako, a New Zealand fur seal, is the smallest – but he has the biggest personality. All the fur seals that live here were injured in the wild and now would not Even though they are not hunted now, survive on their own.” New Zealand fur seals are still in danger from drowning in fishing nets or choking on plastic they find in the sea. You can help fur seals and other sea animals by picking up any plastic you find on a beach. If you see a fur seal, don’t try to touch it. If you are walking with your dog, keep the dog away too. If you ever find a seal that is severely injured, tangled up in net or other rubbish, or being annoyed by people or dogs, call the Department of Conservation HOTline 0800 362 468. Spring 10 ZOOAlive 15 Te Wao Nui a unique New Zealand experience From the world’s rarest duck - that also doesn’t fly, to one of the planet’s heaviest insects, frogs that don’t croak, and a reptile-like creature that pre- dates dinosaurs, New Zealand is home to incredible wildlife found nowhere else on this earth In recent months Auckland Zoo has begun construction of our new New Zealand precinct, Te Wao Nui, that will encompass six distinct ecosystems, cover a quarter of the Zoo’s on-display area, and be home to many of these unique creatures. This $16m New Zealand development, which is being funded by Auckland City Council ($9.4m) and through funds raised by the Auckland Zoo Charitable Trust, is the largest and most important project ever undertaken in our 88-year history. Increasing conservation efforts Auckland Zoo director, Jonathan Wilcken, says Te Wao Nui is about celebrating and helping to protect this country’s unique native wildlife. “It’s really going to open the door on the conservation work that the Zoo has been doing for native species behind-the-scenes for many years, and will see us increasing these efforts. It will also bring to the fore our many important partnerships, including those with the Department of Conservation and Ngati Whatua o Orakei – both of whom have been key in helping us make this project a reality.” Visitors will also play a part in contributing to conserving Aotearoa’s unique creatures of the ocean, land and air, as a percentage of every adult admission will be directed to help New Zealand animals in the wild. With the Zoo looking to grow its links with restoration projects and community groups we also For you, our visitors, Te Wao Nui is going to offer the opportunity to experience hope to connect you, our visitors, with these groups and inspire you to get this country’s animals, plants and living cultural history in a way that’s never more involved. been done before in New Zealand, and with an opening date of September 2011, that’s just a year away! If you’ve come into the Zoo recently, you may have noticed that Sea Lion & Penguin Shores has been closed off. This area is being redeveloped to become the first area of Te Wao Nui – ‘The Coast’ due to open in December (see story page 7). The other five areas are ‘The Islands’, ‘The Wetlands’, The Night Forest’, ‘The Forest’ and ‘The High Country’. In total, Te Wao Nui will feature over 60 animal species and over 100 plant species. Much of the development for these areas is taking place in areas of the Zoo that you wouldn’t normally visit. The area that included our old aquarium is where ‘The Wetlands’ and ‘The Night Forest’ are being created, while ‘The High Country’ uses land at the back of the Zoo that was once our llama paddock, and extends up into the hillside. ‘The Forest’, located at our former NZ Native Aviary, will be home to many of our unique native birds, including the endangered kokako, and the world’s rarest duck, the Campbell Island teal. In ‘The Night Forest’ you will encounter iconic animals like our kiwi and native Morepork, but also species that have never been on public display or held here before, such as the short-tailed bat (one of NZ’s only two mammals), cave weta, and one of the world’s heaviest insects, the Wetapunga!