FZS’s 2016 Annual Report offers insight into the work that we do in our project areas, some of the success stories from 2016 and prospects for 2017.
Annual Report 2016
Even today the Frankfurt Zoological Society conjures up the memory of Bernhard Grzimek, Africa and the Serengeti. But FZS has, of course, become so much more. South America, in particular, has become a real focus. The Andes to Amazon Conservation Programme has turned into our second largest conservation project and supports the Peruvian conservation area authority SERNANP in protecting the countries’ enormous and wild rainforests.
Along with the ivory poaching episodes in Africa, illegal gold extraction in Peru became a major concern for us last year, since these activities negatively impact one of our focus conservation regions, the Madre de Dios. The breathtaking beauty and magnitude of this unique rainforest in southeastern Peru are best experienced from the air. But it is also from this perspective that the true scope of the environmental catastrophe emerges. Spurred on by high gold prices, tens of thousands of people pan for gold on a massive scale the sediments of rainforest rivers. In 2016, gold-seekers even entered a conservation area for the first time at the Tambopata Reserve. Panning for gold in the rivers has become a major business, and countering these illegal activities has become one of SERNANP’s greatest challenges. We are doing our best to support SERNANP.
Gold is going to remain a part of our culture, there is no denying that. But be a conscientious consumer. Ask questions about the origins of the gold you buy, and help us create awareness that gold can have a dark side, too.
Our mission is to conserve wild and natural areas – from Peru to Sumatra, from Kazakhstan to Zimbabwe. I am very pleased to present you with our Annual Report for 2016, which offers insight into our work and some of the success stories from the past year. It is encouraging that so many of our projects have made an impact, both in con- serving natural areas and in creating new areas where nature is protected, such as in the Carpathian Mountains.
President of the Frankfurt Zoological Society