Press Release: March 23, 2010
Lemur Dillemma - Heavily pregnant Cookie and her partner Ringo face an uncertain future unless the Tropical Zoo in Syon Park can raise a further £300,000 to start building their new permanent home. The Purdy family who founded the Zoo almost 20 years ago are appealing to the public for help.
Ringo and Cookie, were originally confiscated by DEFRA Northern Ireland where they were being held illegally. After their six month quarantine at Heathrow, The Tropical Zoo were the only body prepared to provide a home for them with short notice. With the help of Seccombes, a local builders merchant, a new enclosure was built and the lemur family started the process of settling in.
Alice Purdy, daughter of the founder and Educational Director said: We were so excited when our gorgeous Lemurs provided us with a most unexpected Christmas present. Discovering that Cookie was pregnant shows how well she has settled in after her horrific past. It is great news for the happy lemur couple and fantastic news for the species.
Ring tailed lemurs are endangered and could face extinction within 20 years. The Tropical Zoo is similarly endangered after 20 years of providing an educational resource to over 60,000 local people each year, 40,000 of whom were school children.
Tony Purdy, founder said: Although, where ever possible, animals are returned to the wild, for various reasons this is not always possible. We are committed to providing a home for those animals for the rest of their lives - some of the oldest residents have been located here for almost 20 years. We have done everything we can, but now need to appeal for fundraising help from the public in order to raise the remaining £300,000 needed to be able to start the process of building their new permanent home.
With Easter approaching, it is the perfect opportunity to support The Tropical Zoo. The staff would love to welcome you and hope to be able to introduce you to Cookie junior who may have arrived by then. There are various activities available including a tropical Easter Egg Hunt.
Notes to the Editor
1) The Tropical Zoo in Syon Park has to move to make way for new development in the Park.
2) Unless The Tropical Zoo can raise the remaining £300,000 deposit by the end of May, they will not be able to move to a fantastic new location within the Hounslow borough.
3) All the animals in The Tropical Zoo have been rescued by the RSPCA, CITES or are unwanted pets. For many, the Zoo provides them with a last chance for a happy life.
4) The Tropical Zoo is privately owned but have applied to the Charity Commission for charity status to reflect the charitable nature of the work.
5) It will be possible to take a photo with Alice Purdy in the lemur enclosure between 3pm and 5pm on Thursday 25 March 2010 at The Tropical Zoo.
6) Contacts: Alice Purdy Education Director Alice@tropicalzoo.org (07976 382 249) OR Russell Dickens Marketing Manager Russell@tropicalzoo.org 07940 115 609