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All About "Ape"ril

Posted by Diana Jones on 04/06/2012

All About "Ape"ril

By Andrea Curtis, Zoo Naturalist


Happy “Ape”ril everyone!  This is the perfect month to go bananas at the Zoo and celebrate our fascinating apes. 

Our Zoo is strongly committed to the conservation of apes and their precious habitats.  One project that we proudly support is Pan-Eco’s protection of the Sumatran rainforest and the wonderful plants and animals that live there.  A special ape that is found only on the islands of Sumatra and Borneo is the orangutan.  These beautiful red apes are rapidly losing their rainforest homes for the development of palm oil plantations.  With the help of our Zoo’s funding, Pan-Eco is accomplishing some very important goals. 

  • We helped build an orangutan infant care facility that rescues “ex-pet” babies and takes care of them until they can be released back into the wild.    
  • We helped build a nature center that educates local school groups, families and tourists about why the rainforest is important, why orangutans do not make good pets and how to live without relying on palm oil production. 
  • We supplied research equipment so scientists could monitor the numbers of plants and animals that are rely on the rainforest for survival.

Do you want to help too?  Check out some of the easy ways you can help at home or with us at the Zoo! 

At the Zoo

Great EscApe Keeper chats:  Join the Great EscApe keepers for rotating conservation chats on Saturdays and Sundays at 1:30 p.m., weather permitting. Chats rotate between the two Great EscApe buildings.

Round-up for Conservation: The Zoo participates in conservation programs to help insure the survival of many endangered species like great apes. One easy way to support this effort is through our Round Up for Conservation program. When you make a purchase at the Zoo, just round up your purchase to the next dollar and your money will support conservation projects. A few cents makes a lot of sense and a big impact.

Gorilla Golf: Take a swing “fore” gorilla conservation during Gorilla Golf 2012. Gorilla Golf is a four-person scramble featuring breakfast and lunch, hole-in-one prizes, special contests and a raffle. This year’s event will be held at The Greens Country Club on Monday, April 23. Registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. with a shotgun start at 9 a.m. Individual golfer registration is $125; team of four registration is $750. Sponsorship opportunities are also available. For more information about this event, sponsorships or to register contact Allie Sheldon at 405-425-0613 or by e-mail at [email protected]. All donations made and all net proceeds raised from the Gorilla Golf tournament will go to support the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International which is dedicated to the conservation and protection of gorillas and their habitats in Africa.


At Home:  

What is Palm Oil and what can I do?


Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Program:

Conservation tips for Home:

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The Zoo is a fully accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and the American Association of Museums (AAM) as both a living museum and a botanical garden. AZA accredited facilities are dedicated to providing excellent care for their plants and animals, a great experience for guests and a better future for all living things.

A New Breath of Fresh Air: As of Nov. 1, 2007, state law prohibits smoking inside zoological parks. Please help us abide by this law by refraining from smoking within the Zoo. Thank you for maintaining a smoke-free environment for all living things!