SANTIAGO – Chile’s Santiago Zoo is joining the global trend of transforming traditional zoological parks into bioparks, officials told EFE.
“The zoo is taking in wildlife for rehabilitation, giving it all the necessary treatment and later reintroducing it into the wild. We take in 500 animals a year and do not scrimp on costs in helping them,” Santiago Zoo director Alejandra Montalba said.
The attraction has been “transforming itself” into a modern zoo that “cares for and protects” about 1,000 animals from 150 species, the zoo director said.
The Santiago Zoo, which will celebrate its 92nd birthday in 2017, welcomes nearly 900,000 visitors annually, Montalba said.
“We have animals here that are close to extinction, like the red lemur and the white and black lemur, as well as native wildlife that even Chileans, in fact, don’t know about,” Montalba said.
A zoo should be a center for educating society about the care of animals, the Santiago Zoo director said.
“Who loves animals more than us, who work with them every day? The term animal lover is misused. I invite them to work with us to educate society and prevent the extinction of species,” Montalba said.