Durrell welcomes European zoo directors for Conservation Leadership Conference

This week Durrell is hosting the Directors’ Days conference with the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA). The event welcomes over 130 zoo directors from across Europe who have come together for this annual conference, which this year is themed around Conservation and Operational Leadership.

The aim of this EAZA Directors’ Days meeting is to highlight that zoos and aquaria can show leadership in conservation and to encourage the community to set ambitious targets for greater conservation impact, to truly show the power of what can be achieved.

Commenting on the Directors’ Days Conference, Durrell’s CEO Dr. Lesley Dickie said: “I wanted to host this event in Jersey as it is our 60th anniversary year and it is very apt that the theme of this meeting is conservation leadership. From its very beginnings Jersey Zoo, and thereafter the whole Trust, has only ever had one mission, that of saving species from extinction. We were the first zoo in the world to be founded for the purposes of conservation and continue to pursue conservation through everything we do, be that saving species and ecosystems in the wild, connecting people to nature, or training the conservationists of the future, all underpinned with exemplary science, monitoring and evaluation.

This commitment and leadership in conservation is costly and difficult, but it pays off, and multiple avoided extinctions are the result, something of which we and our partners are truly proud. The next few years will see this commitment and effort increase, as we go through a step-change of scaling up our activities in line with our Rewild our World strategy. However, we are confident that this will happen, simply because we have no choice, the planet needs all of us to step up and do more.”