Rocky Zoo marks World Chimp Day

Published on 14 July 2022

Councillor Rutherford pictured with Assistant Curator Sharni Thomas

Rockhampton Regional Council has swung into this World Chimp Day with a donation to help protect wild populations in the rainforests of Liberia.  

Parks, Sport and Public Spaces Councillor Cherie Rutherford thanked Rockhampton Zoo visitors throughout the year for making the donation of $8,819 possible.

“We have committed 15% of money raised through our meerkat encounters as well as visitor donations for conservation projects like this one. Half of the money set aside in the last financial year will go toward this project,” Cr Rutherford said.  

“Our chimp troop is absolutely beloved by our community, and breeding programs like ours form a very important role in chimp conservation internationally.

“There is nothing better, however, than protecting chimps in their own natural environment. Unfortunately the Western Chimpanzee in Liberia is critically endangered due to animals being poached for the illegal pet trade or hunted for bush meat.

“This donation to Fauna & Flora International will help strengthen Liberia’s law enforcement capacity by finalising and launching the collaborative Wildlife Crime Strategy in Liberia, which will directly support the regional and national action plans for the conservation of chimpanzees.

“The strategy will also help combat the illegal trade of other animals that share the chimpanzee’s habitat, such as pangolins, parrots, elephants and pygmy hippos.

“I can’t think of a better way to celebrate World Chimp Day than with a donation like this one.

“I hope every visitor who has contributed is proud of the impact this will make. It’s a great way to mark the day.”