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Zoo News

Palm Beach Zoo One of Three Florida Zoos Receiving National Award for Conservation

SILVER SPRING, MD. — The Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) announced that Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society, Brevard Zoo, and Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo have been recognized with AZA’s 2018 North American Conservation Award for significant achievement in the Perdido Key beach mouse Species Survival Plan program. The three AZA-accredited facilities received this national award during AZA’s September conference in Seattle.This annual award recognizes exceptional efforts toward regional habitat preservation, species restoration, and support of biodiversity in the wild.

“This award recognizes the vital role aquariums and zoos play in saving threatened and endangered animals from extinction within our own communities,” said AZA President and CEO Dan Ashe. “Brevard Zoo, Palm Beach Zoo, and Santa Fe Teaching Zoo are trailblazers in North American wildlife conservation, protecting the Perdido Key beach mouse and our local and natural heritage through the Species Survival Plan program.”

Perdido Key beach mice (PKBM) made the endangered species list in 1985 with an estimated population of only a few dozen mice. The core value to conserve and protect wildlife and their habitat brought partners together in an effort to save the Perdido Key beach mouse from extinction. Partners worked together to combine resources and merge their individual strengths. The successful accomplishment of recovery plan objectives including: restoring habitat, creating educational programs and a successful zoo breeding program has brought the PKBM back from the brink of extinction. Today, the PKBM population is at a 30 year high with an estimated population of a few thousand individuals.                

“Although diminutive in size the Perdido Beach Mouse has a big impact on coastal ecosystems positively impacting other species of animals and plants,” said Palm Beach Zoo President & CEO, Margo McKnight. “By working to save this small mouse we are in effect working to save an entire habitat. Palm Beach Zoo is honored to be working with the Brevard Zoo and Santa Fe Teaching Zoo to protect and restore this highly endangered species.”

About AZA

Founded in 1924, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, animal welfare, education, science, and recreation. AZA is the accrediting body for the top zoos and aquariums in the United States and seven other countries. Look for the AZA accreditation logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you, and a better future for all living things. The AZA is a leader in saving species and your link to helping animals all over the world. 

Posted by Naki Carter at 7:25 PM
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