22 Feb 2018 | Digital editions, magazines, websites, e-zines, handbooks and contract publishing for the leisure industry

Leisure Opportunities issue 730, 2018 is now out!

Blogs:

Read blogs by writer:

Liz Terry
CEO,
Leisure Media

Kate Cracknell
editor-at-large,
Health Club Management

Tom Walker
Journalist,
Leisure Media

Our guest writers:

Aleatha Ezra
Director of park member development,
World Waterpark Association

Jennifer Fields
Communications Coordinator,
Association of Zoos and Aquariums

Brad Irwin
Partnerships development manager,
Natural History Museum

Michel Buchel
President of Ecsite and CEO of NEMO, Amsetrdan,
NEMO

Julie Becker
Communications and Events Manager,
Ecsite

Eva McDiarmid
Chief Executive,
ASVA

Kurt Janson
Policy Director,
Tourism Alliance

Peter Ducker
Chief executive,
Institute of Hospitality

Maria Zolotonosa
Project Manager,
Ecsite

Ian Taylor
CEO,
SkillsActive

Ufi Ibrahim
Chief Executive,
British Hospitality Association

John Goodbody
Sports Journalist

Sam Coulstock
Customer Relationship Director,
Springboard

Lucy Schweingruber
Fundraising and Events Manager,
Ecsite

View all guest writers

At the front line of conservation

15 Feb 2013
by Jennifer Fields, Communications Coordinator, Association of Zoos and Aquariums
Being AZA accredited means that an attraction has a track record of being dedicated to educating people

There are a total of 221 zoos and aquariums accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) across seven countries. Each of these help connect people to nature and collectively they welcome 175 million visitors per year.

Being AZA accredited means that an attraction has a track record of being dedicated to educating people about the challenges many species face in the wild and is a global leader in field conservation.

One of these is Ocean Park in Hong Kong, which first opened in January 1977. Since its launch, it has developed itself into a world-class attraction, welcoming almost 7.5 million people a year, with wildlife conservation serving as a key platform for the organisation. For Ocean Park Conservation Foundation, Hong Kong (OPCFHK), 2013 began with this mission in mind – a major effort in seahorse conservation.

In order to further understand and protect seahorses, OPCFHK conducted the first systematic seahorse survey in Hong Kong, covering 31 sites in local waters from September 2011 to October 2012.

According to data reported 10 years ago, yellow seahorses were moderately abundant in Hong Kong waters, but the recent seahorse survey conducted by OPCFHK showed that only six seahorses were found in 31 diving sites in Hong Kong's eastern waters, including areas around Sai Kung and Tung Ping Chau.

Different factors impact seahorse survival, with 11 out of 54 species listed as Vulnerable or Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. They are typically threatened by over-exploitation for uses in traditional Chinese medicine and loss or degradation of natural habitats.

In 2013, the scope of this survey will be expanded to include more sites in Hong Kong. The OPCFHK will also embark on a seahorse tagging initiative – the first ever in Hong Kong. Over the years, OPCFHK has also handed out more than HK$500,000 worth of funding to support seahorse-related conservation initiatives in Asia.

This is just one example of the work that AZA members continually conduct.



Tags: Attractions Management  tourism  visitor attractions 

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