Due to the constant political upheaval and civil commotion on the Ivory Coast, not only have the living conditions of the people in the West African country deteriorated rapidly, but the animal population of the renowned Abidjan Zoo is also suffering grievously under these difficult conditions.
Dave Morgan of the WildWelfare Initiative made the introductions between our Academy for the Welfare of Zoo Animals and Wildlife e. V. and the Abidjan Zoo. In June of 2013, Dr. Julia Countess Maltzan flew to Abidjan. At the zoo, with the help of Zoologist Robert Champion, she was happy to see that many positive changes had taken place. The donations she had on hand – various medicaments, anesthetics and two blowpipes – were, however, urgently needed for medication.
During her eight-day stay, Dr. Maltzan practically worked around the clock. She treated ill animals, developed a veterinary medicine concept for the zoo and taught a course on using blowpipes to immobilize and treat animals in a safe way. In addition, the Academy provided recommendations on animal husbandry and feeding, and together with the highly motivated staff and Jeanne-Marie Pittmann of the Westafrican Private Conservation Action, a local treatment room and pharmacy was furnished and stocked.
The Academy is committed to continuing its support of the Abidjan Zoo in word and deed. The goal is to ensure that the local population has access to animals indigenous to the region, which in turn will motivate the local population to protect and conserve their country’s precious wildlife thus providing a valuable contribution to the global conservation of wildlife.