Zoos to implement conservation for red pandas in the wild 

John Ball Zoo has become a founding member of a national program to save wild red pandas.
Jaime Racalla, animal care supervisor, and Bill Flanagan, conservation manager, were part of getting John Ball Zoo involved alongside other zoos to create and implement a multi-pronged approach to red panda conservation. The program is through the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA), which accredits John Ball Zoo and other institutions. AZA runs the Saving Animals From Extinction (SAFE) species program, which brings member institutions together to save animals from extinction. The red panda is the 41st SAFE species program.
“John Ball Zoo has supported the conservation of red pandas for years, and participating in the SAFE species program will allow us to have even more of a direct impact,” said Racalla, who will serve on the steering committee for the program. “It is an honor to work with other knowledgeable institutions to preserve this amazing species.”
John Ball Zoo supports red panda conservation by caring for and breeding the species at the Zoo, as well as provides support for Red Panda Network to plant thousands of trees for red panda habitats and equip homes near the habitats with fuel efficient wood stoves to prevent deforestation. The committee will work with Red Panda Network, which will serve as the group’s partner in the field.
“These initiatives support the creation and protection of habitats that are critical to red pandas,” Flanagan said. “Additionally, they also support the health and well-being of local communities and carry our mission of preserving wildlife and wild places across the world.”
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