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David Attenborough steps in with classy gesture to save London Zoo from extinction


Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Zoo has been closed for 12 weeks, six times as long as it was at the start of the Second World War. The cost of feeding the animals remained at £43,500 a month. The veteran broadcaster told the Sunday Times: “What happens if you can’t raise the money to keep the animals?

“What happens if you can’t afford the food?

“Are we supposed to put them down?

“The immediate prospect of the zoo going financially bust is too awful to think of.

“Are we, or are we not, a civilised community that it can’t support a zoo?”

The Zoo has warned it “at risk of extinction” with 18,000 animals under threat.

The money from the fundraising campaign will got to a £25million rescue package.

London and Whipsnade reopened last Monday but ZSL director-general Dominic Jermey says they remain in “dire peril”.

Due to current social distancing legislation, visitors numbers are capped at 2,000 and 3,000 respectively.

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Mr Attenborough is 94-years-old and shielding from the virus in his Richmond Park home.

Frankie Hobro, the owner of Anglesey Sea Zoo, earlier this week expressed concern over the future of her zoo.

She said she was frustrated by the Welsh Government’s failure to help save the zoo.

Ms Hobro told the BBC: “The Anglesey Sea Zoo is in a particularly untenable position, with high running costs, staffing costs and the pressure of maintaining ultimate animal welfare, with absolutely no income during closure and currently no promise of when we will be allowed to reopen for our income to return.”

Zoos in Wales are yet to reopen.

Ms Hobro explained: “We had exciting plans for the Anglesey Sea Zoo in 2020, with several fundamental changes planned across the site and the prospect of an exciting expansion project on the horizon,” she added.

“Sadly, as a result of the Covid-19 crisis, instead we have been faced with a fight for survival.”

London Zoo attracted over 1.1 million visitors in 2018.

In 2017, Chester Zoo had 1.9 million visitors.


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