Invest in the Nest

The mission of the Seneca Park Zoo is to inspire our community to connect, care for, and conserve wildlife and wild places. We do this is by partnering with various other organizations who share our mission.

One of the most important partnerships we have is with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), our national accrediting body and the organization through which we work with other zoos across the country and internationally to conserve species and ecosystems.

An important new initiative of the AZA is SAFE: Saving Animals From Extinction, an effort to fully integrate the actions taken for species in human care with actions taken for those same species in their natural range, to ultimately save them in place and preserve natural ecosystems.

One of the first species being focused on is the African black-footed penguin.

The black-footed penguin has seen dramatic losses during the last 100 years for a variety of reasons, one of which is loss of nesting sites due to harvesting of guano for fertilizer. As a result, the burrow-nesting birds find themselves with very limited places to nest.

As one of the most successful penguin colonies in human care, with more than 100 chicks hatched and raised since 1997, we have an opportunity to make an impact in that area by supporting an initiative by AZA SAFE to design and build nest boxes that will work in their home range.

Today kicks off a national Kickstarter campaign to raise money for this truly worthwhile initiative. I encourage you to support the Campaign nationally and to support Seneca Park Zoo’s other efforts to save this magnificent bird.

— Larry Sorel, Zoo Director