The Granby Zoo does not just have new buildings in its boxes: the organization plans to create a reserve where its old animals will end their days peacefully away from the public. The site will also be able to welcome researchers.
The lack of space at the Zoological Garden complicates its development. Parking problems for visitors are well known. However, difficulties with geriatric animals, quarantine requirements, the introduction of new animals among their species, the reproduction and separation of males from females when they give birth, are less so, explains Paul Gosselin, Executive Director. of the Zoo.
“It’s very complicated for our veterinarians and guardians to manage all this with the limited space we have. We need square feet, but we do not have any more, “he said in an interview with La Voix de l’Est.
The leaders say they have found the solution: the development of a reserve on a large land in rural areas where all these animals would live, stay or transit. They are inspired by the reserve created by the Calgary Zoo for the same reasons.
“We want something close, here in Granby or in the surrounding area. It must be easy for our world to transport animals between the two sites, “said Mr. Gosselin.
The ideal place would be a farm, says the big boss of the Zoo, with neighbors at a good distance. The area needed for a reserve has not yet been determined, he said. Neither the investments required to carry out such a project. The amount will be important, he admits without encrypting it. Buildings will have to be built to house the animals, outdoor enclosures and fences installed around the site, he lists.
Several other projects are already planned, says Mr. Gosselin, including the layout of hippos and rhinoceros enclosures. He expects, however, that the creation of the reserve will occur around 2023.
Research and biodiversity
The future reserve will also serve as a center for scientific research, notes Mr. Gosselin. He envisions that university professors, students of the master’s degree in biology, students from the Saint-Hyacinthe campus of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Montreal come on site. The place will be conducive to acquiring knowledge, he believes.
“It’s going to be a site template dedicated to animal biodiversity research and how to protect it. This is one of our most important missions, “he says.
Investments to support research will not stop there. The Horace-Boivin Pavilion will be modernized to make more room for Zoo professionals and scientists, says Mr. Gosselin.
The building currently serves as an administrative center with many offices. There is an auditorium and rooms used especially for day camps. The renovations will add one floor to the building, which has two floors. Laboratories will be developed. The Zoo’s biologists could thus abandon the two temporary trailers, installed in recent years for their soft-spiny tortoise breeding projects and bats, to move there.