Prague Zoo has raised nearly 13.5 million crowns (approximately 840,000
AUD) through a public donation fund to help in the relief efforts to
Australia, which was ravaged by devastating bushfires, the zoo’s director
Miroslav Bobek announced on Sunday.
According to Mr. Bobek, the funds will be used for immediate relief but also for mid-term or long-term projects aimed at protection of certain locations or animal species. The collection was established on January 6 and will continue for the next two months.
At least 30 people have been killed in the unprecedented bushfires, which have swept large parts of Australia since October, and around 10 million hectares of land has burned. It is also estimated that around a billion animals have been lost to the fire.
Officials from Dvůr Králové zoo and other international organisations have announced fresh progress in efforts to save the northern white rhino, of which only two remain alive. They have now created a third embryo that would be carried by another subspecies and the next step will be to identify suitable surrogates. I spoke to Dvůr Králové’s Jan Stejskal, who is coordinating efforts to preserve the northern white rhino.
As bushfires continue to ravage large swathes of Australia, people across the world are donating money to help in the relief efforts. This is also the case in the Czech Republic, where millions of crowns have been raised through various institutional and individual pledges. The Prague Zoo alone has raised more than CZK 4,7 million to help local fauna.
The Prague Zoo has gone a long way since being hit by severe floods in 2002 and has become one of the best zoos in the world, according to some international rankings. Its range of attractions will expand next year through the opening of a special Darwin Crater Pavilion housing species from the Tasmania and Australia.
A contract to build a new gorilla pavilion at the Prague Zoo has been
awarded to the builder Strabag in an open tender. More than 17,000 people
donated to the construction, raising some 31 million crowns.
The new 210 million crown gorilla pavilion will be nearly three times larger than the current enclosure, and also be located out of danger of flooding.
Ahead of floods in 2013, over 1,000 animals, including gorillas, were moved from the lower part of the Prague Zoo. A deluge in 2002 claimed the lives of more than 100 animals, including a male gorilla named Pong.
Dvůr Králové Zoo is spearheading an international effort to save the Northern White Rhino which is on the brink of extinction. Last week an international team of experts trying to produce the world’s first test tube baby rhino made international headlines. I asked Dvůr Králové Zoo’s special projects coordinator Jan Stejskal, who is a member of the team, to report on the latest progress.
A three-year-old male Red Panda, an endangered species, has escaped from
the Pilsen Zoo. Authorities have asked for the public not to try to catch
the animal, which though not inherently aggressive, could strike out if
The Red Panda (Ailurus fulgens, or “shining-cat”) is a small arboreal mammal, only slightly larger than a domestic cat, native to the eastern Himalayas and southwestern China.
Pilsen Zoo spokesman Martin Vobruba said Red Pandas are agile explorers and may have leapt from a tree to escape the enclosure.
Several Red Pandas had escaped from Czech zoos over the past decade. One that escaped from Jihlava Zoo was dubbed “Kajinek” after a Czech hitman who escaped from a high-security prison in north Moravia.
A rare North American porcupine was born at Prague zoo in mid-June, the zoo
has announced. The breeders have not yet been able to determine the sex of
The large rodents, native to North America and Canada, are reminiscent of porcupines due to their coat of needle-like quills, but in fact they are closely related to guinea pigs and spend much of their life on trees.
Prague zoo has been breeding the North American porcupines since 1958.
Two Barbary lion cubs have been born in Dvůr Králové Zoo, an important
breeder of large African mammals since the 1970s.
The cubs, one male and one female, have not yet been named. They were born in mid-May to a two-year old lioness named Khalila and a seven-year-old male named Bart.
The zoo did not announce the birth until it was clear they were healthy.
Barbary lions are a subspecies believed to have been extinct in the wild since the 1960s. Fewer than 100 are estimated to live in captivity.