In many areas of the world, both animals and plants alike are becoming endangered and therefore at a higher risk of extinction.

Why are species becoming endangered

  • Habitat destruction and fragmentation, due to agricultural, logging and rural development
  • Pollution
  • Climate change
  • Natural disasters
  • Illegal wildlife trade
  • Increased competition or predation from introduced species.

Extinction does of course happen naturally, but this is normally a very slow process and occurs over millions of years. As one species dies out another develops, this is the process of evolution.

But today extinction rates have increased partly due to humans, so to help maintain what we have on earth we need to have conservation measures. This is where modern zoos, wildlife and safari parks become important. Captive populations can ensure that species do not become extinct and in the future be released into the wild.

LEMURS

At Secret Valley, we have two  species of Lemurs: Red-ruffed Lemur and White-fronted brown Lemur. All lemurs are classed as critically endangered in the wild.

We aim to start researching Lemurs in more detail. We are interested in other research related to different aspects of Lemur life in captivity, enclosure design, aggression relative to enclosure size, type and habitat change. We also want to research areas that improve Lemur husbandry, enrichment and have a conservation value.

With this in mind, we would find it important to educate and raise the awareness of our visitors to the plight of these endangered species. By keeper talks, information signs and activities we hope to make our visitors aware of on going conservation of these species.

We also feel the need to protect our native flora and fauna so we have turned parts of the farm into natural habits to a sufficient level to allow our native plants and animals to flourish.

Native Flora and Fauna

We also feel the need to protect our native flora and fauna so we have turned parts of the park into natural habits to a sufficient level to allow our native plants and animals to flourish.

We are currently in the process of setting up programmes to help conserve our natural wildlife. This includes:

  • Working in conjunction with the National Biodiversity Centre to record the number and species of Bees in our park.
  • Installing Bat boxes around the park and monitoring existing bat habitats and will be recording numbers and species in conjunction with Bat Conservation Ireland.
  • Installing Swift boxes in the hope of attracting swifts as their numbers are in decline and aiding Bird Watch Ireland with their National Swift Survey.
  • In our wetland area our pond has become an important breeding ground for frogs. In the future we hope to allow more of this area to naturalize to encourage the survival of frogs and other wetland species.