Toronto Zoo Celebrates International Polar Bear Day!

Toronto Zoo is proud to be a leader in polar bear conservation and a champion for Canada’s vulnerable majestic species. The Zoo is involved in collaborative research projects with multiple accredited zoos and organizations to help better understand polar bear reproductive biology, nutrition and behaviour studies.  This  scientific research then provides valuable information to support polar bear education, research and conservation efforts both at the Zoo and in the wild. Some of these organizations include Polar Bears International (PBI), Parks Canada, the North American Polar Bear Species Survival Plan (SSP), and Acres for the Atmosphere.

Polar bear keepers are very passionate about working with this iconic Canadian species and behavioural training with the polar bears is an important component of their daily routine. Training exercises a variety of husbandry behaviours that allow Keepers to give the best possible care for the five polar bears at the Toronto Zoo. The Toronto Zoo polar bears are also trained to allow voluntary injections for vaccines and blood draws. These behaviours not only keep the polar bears physically healthy, but mentally stimulated and engaged.

Toronto Zoo biologists and researchers work closely with their wildlife biologist counterparts in the field with valuable learning and studies that can be applied to polar bear conservation in the wild. The knowledge gained through polar bears in our care provide invaluable information that is shared internationally and is essential for the survival of this vulnerable species. This is very important as biologists estimate there are only approximately 20,000 to 25,000 polar bears in the wild with approximately 60% of those living in Canada. Continue reading “Toronto Zoo Celebrates International Polar Bear Day!”

IIFA AND UNITED NATIONS JOIN FORCES TO CAMPAIGN : ‘BEAT PLASTIC POLLUTION’

The 19th Edition of IIFA Weekend & Awards 2018 and the United Nations have come together to promote the campaign, “Beat Plastic Pollution”, the theme for World Environment Day, 2018 to combat one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time. The message is clear: If you can’t reuse it, refuse it!

The UN continues its partnership with IIFA this year with a collaborative advocacy campaign to tackle the pressing issue of plastic pollution, under the aegis of Greening the IIFA.

The campaign is a clarion call for action for all of us to come together and consider how we can make changes in our everyday lives to reduce the heavy burden of plastic pollution on our natural habitat, our oceans, our wildlife – and our own health.

The goal is to inspire people to search for the kind of solutions that lead to sustainable behaviour change upstream. Additionally, the campaign will provice momentum to beat plastic pollution and inspire innovators, activists and leaders worldwide to do more than just clean up existing plastics, but also focus our action upstream.

IIFA has always promoted activities that make our world a better place to live in. Since 2007, IIFA has adopted the green carpet as a show of support and to create awareness about environmental concerns. While plastic has many valuable uses, we have become over reliant on single-use or disposable plastic – with severe environmental consequences. Continue reading “IIFA AND UNITED NATIONS JOIN FORCES TO CAMPAIGN : ‘BEAT PLASTIC POLLUTION’”

TORONTO ZOO’S TWO TINY RHINOS HAVE NAMES!

The public has spoken! With over 5,500 people voting in the Toronto Zoo’s “Help Us Name Our Baby Rhinos” promotion, names for the greater one-horned rhino and white rhino have emerged as favourites. “Kiran”, meaning “ray of light” in Hindi,has been confirmed as the name for the Toronto Zoo’s male greater one-horned rhino calf! “Theodore”, starting with a “T” for dad Tom, has been confirmed as the name for the Toronto Zoo’s male white rhino calf! The Zoo’s Wildlife Care Keepers chose potential names for both the calves and the Toronto Zoo asked the public to vote online to help decide on the BEST name for each calf.

“By encouraging the public to assist us in naming our baby rhinos, it allows us to engage the community in a fun way,” says Maria Franke, Curator of Mammals, Toronto Zoo. “At the same time, it also allows us to bring forward the plight that all rhino species face in the wild. We hope that we have educated and empowered people to help the Toronto Zoo generate funds for conservation efforts to save these majestic animals.”

Theodore was born on December 24, 2017, to mother Zohari and father Tom. Kiran was born on January 4, 2018, to mother Ashakiran (affectionately known to her keepers as “Asha”) and father Vishnu.

Theodore’s birth is very important for white rhinoceros conservation as the species is currently listed as Near Threatened on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.  Continue reading “TORONTO ZOO’S TWO TINY RHINOS HAVE NAMES!”