Author: Constanze Mager (Burgers’ Zoo, Arnhem, The Netherlands)
Imagine a lecture hall full of people eager to learn more about the Asian songbird crises and the EAZA conservation campaign… the dream of every campaigner, the dream of every educator. On the evening of 17th of January 2018, this dream came true in Royal Burgers’ Zoo, the Netherlands. 260 listeners showed up for an evening lecture on tropical birds and the campaign.
Head Zookeeper of the world-famous Bush, Christiaan Luttenberg, warmed up the crowd with his talk on the challenges that zookeepers face in the husbandry of often rare tropical birds in a huge mixed enclosure like the Burgers’ Bush. It is the place where we keep different campaign target and focus species, like the White-rumped shama, the Asian fairy bluebird and the Blue-crowned laughingthrush. Then I was giving a talk on the campaign background, the conservation projects the campaign will collect money for and the activities we are going to enrol in the zoo for the campaign.
After the presentation, one of the listeners, a passionate birder and world traveller came up to me and said, ‘Well, I did already know that there is a bird crisis going on in Asia, but I had no idea it was this urgent to act.’
As we also sold buttons and fridge magnets with the campaign logo that evening (participants can get the mall for those buttons in the resource section of the website), we made already our first 101 Euro for the campaign!