As zoos and safari parks are set to re-open on June 15, Chester zoo have been saved from collapse by nearly £2.5m in donations. As well as being given the green light to re-open to the public next week, the zoo’s crowdfunding page has been flooded with donations from people and businesses.
This includes the adoption of all penguins at the zoo by supermarket Iceland. The shop will finance the lives of all Chester zoo penguins, and they also helped to lobby the government for the re-opening of zoos and safaris.
Social distancing measures will be in place at the zoo to ensure the safety of visitors, and it is hoped that this will help the zoo to survive. Since closing their doors in late March, COVID-19 lockdown measures have cost the zoo £5m and put them at risk of having to close permanently. The donations and re-opening of Chester zoo will help them to continue to run their ‘zoo without bars’ and care for species on the brink of extinction.
Other safaris and zoos opening on June 15 include London Zoo, Whipsnade Zoo and Howletts. It is hoped that the re-opening of zoos and safaris will enable staff to continue to care for vulnerable species and support conservation projects.