Norden’s Ark

Maintained in natural conditions, more snow leopards reproduce at Norden's Ark than anywhere else in the world. (c) Andrew Gray

Maintained in natural conditions, more snow leopards reproduce at Norden’s Ark than anywhere else in the world. (c) Andrew Gray

Before leaving Norden’s Ark in Sweden I was able to witness once more the wonderful way in which all the animals are being maintained there. Most people know my feelings about the keeping of many mammals in captivity, but Norden’s Ark is no Zoo. This is the largest Conservation Centre in Europe and its land stretches as far as the eye can see. Animals maintained there live happily in huge fenced of mountainside exhibits, in conditions perfect for them to thrive and reproduce. Its really amazing to get up close to species such as Amur tigers and Snow leopards at feeding time, and the whole experience with the big cats there has been amazing.

On a slightly smaller scale I also got to witness the new developments being made with the reptiles and amphibians at Norden’s Ark, from the new Lemur Frog conservation facility thats being purpose built, to the new rearing facility used for supporting the conservation of the previously mentioned native Green Toad.

Kristofer Försäter, Norden's Arks lead herpetological keeper.

Kristofer Försäter, Nordens Ark’s lead herpetological keeper and committed amphibian conservationist.

Kristofer Försäter is highly instrumental in these developments, from the design of the new facilities to the management and maintenance of the animals. I have known Kristofer for many years now and I cannot speak highly enough of his knowledge and his commitment to providing the best conditions for the animals in his care here at Norden’s Ark. He is a true ambassador for their work in amphibian conservation.

As the work by this non-profit conservation organisation continues to develop and impress, I would recommend anyone who has the opportunity to visit and witness this special place to do so. In my opinion, Nordens Ark’s exhibits and the captive conditions in which they maintain their animals are some of the best in the world and the importance they place on supporting related in-situ conservation is wonderful.

I would sincerely like to thank all the team at Norden’s Ark for making this visit so special. I would especially like to thank Emma and Kristofer for sharing their passion for the animals that they care so much about and I must also of course thank Professor Claes Andrén, their Scientific leader, for his overwhelming hospitality, valued support, and his guidance and friendship which means so much to me.

Below Kristofer Försäter and Prof Andrén show the green toad rearing facilities at Norden’s Ark and also the release of animals back to native habitat:

 

 

 Norden’s Ark Visit, 2009, (includes video clips)     

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