Conference on conservation in Madagascar at Bristol Zoo Gardens

The future of the only place in the world where lemurs are found in the wild is to be discussed at a conference in Bristol.

Delegates will be examining conservation on the island of Madagascar where lemurs are in danger because people have cut down large areas of forests which is their natural habitat.

The day-long symposium at Bristol Zoo Gardens on February 21 will look at what is being done to safeguard lemurs, as well other threatened wildlife and habitats in Madagascar.

It will also highlight how conservation initiatives with the local people are working to protect these critical areas 

The speakers include Dr Christoph Schwitzer, director of conservation at Bristol Zoological Society and Prof Joerg Ganzhorn from the University of Hamburg.

Dr Schwitzer said:  “This symposium will celebrate the biodiversity of Madagascar, as well as the conservation work that has been and is being done there.

“It will consider where conservationists are now and how the future looks for this important island.”

The 10th annual Bristol Zoological Society symposium will also hear from Victoria Price from Fauna and Flora International and Alexandra Rasomanana from the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology.

Delegates will hear about the ecological and socioeconomic  impact of non-native crops such as vanilla and the chocolate bean cacao.

Dr Schwitzer added: “Madagascar exemplifies the challenges of biodiversity conservation. The livelihood needs of a growing,  poor predominantly rural population have driven some of the highest rates of land conversion anywhere in the world.

“This symposium will encompass the broad spectrum of conservation initiatives.”

The symposium takes place at The Clifton Pavilion at Bristol Zoo Gardens on Wednesday February 21 from 9.45am until 6.30pm.

Tickets are £75 per person or £45 per student and include entry to Bristol Zoo Gardens,  a buffet lunch and coffee and tea breaks.


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