Conservation is an important part of North Georgia Zoo mission to care, connect and conserve animals. As part of that mission the zoo is home to several endangered species, black and white ruff lemur, red ruff lemur, ring-tailed lemurs, new guinea singing dog, chinchillas, In addition to species listed as endangered, the zoo is home numerous animals that are threatened (the population is at risk of becoming endangered). Coati's, binturongs, wolves, black tail prairie dogs are currently on the list of threatened species.
At first glance, these animals may not seem to have much in common. But most species that become threatened or endangered share a set of common traits. For example, many species live in areas that are being destroyed by the encroachment of humans through farming or land development. Deforestation is another problem for endangered species, as animals are pushed farther and farther from their natural habitat. Habitat destruction is usually considered to be the number one threat to the wildlife of our world. In addition, some species fall prey to hunters looking to capitalize on an animal’s economic value, whether for fur trade, jewelry, meat, traditional folk medicine, cosmetics or souvenirs.
OTHER FACTORS THAT THREATEN A SPECIES INCLUDE:
Restricted distribution – an animal lives in only one small place in the world, so one disaster could prove to be devastating to a species.
Migration across international boundaries – species protection requires cooperation from different governments, which is often difficult to achieve.
Adverse to humans – animals may be unable to live and breed in environments that are becoming more populated by humans.
Long gestation period or low birth rate – the black rhinoceros, for example, has a gestation period of 16 months and only has one calf at a time.
Inability to adapt – the animals are unable to survive new factors in their environment, such as chemicals, noise, or air and water pollution.
Pet trade – animals that are popular pets, such as parrots, often die in shipping or because of neglect or abuse.
Domination by an introduced species – sometimes a new species is a predator with no natural enemies and it destroys an existing animal population.
The fact is, in our modern world, many factors threaten animals. And once an animal is extinct, it’s gone forever. At North Georgia Zoo we take our mission of conservation very seriously. We know it is important to protect endangered species and help them breed, encouraging the survival of the species. We also realize a huge part of this is to create awareness and connect the future generation with animals so they to will care and respect animals and their environment and to ensure their are wild places left for animals for many generations come. Remember, as a Zoo Member you can help support North Georgia zoo conservation efforts.