What is nature conservation?
Nature conservation is multifaceted. It includes conserving, restoring and developing nature.
Every ARTIS employee, from animal caretaker to gardener, from biologist to researcher, contributes to this in his or her own way. In the first place with the best care and attention to the (endangered) animals, plants and trees in the park. In addition, through education, research and cooperation with programmes around the world to protect animal species and their habitats. Moreover, nature conservation is not just something from 'far away'. ARTIS also takes care of nature in its own country, city and backyard.
Cooperation within Europe
Many animals in ARTIS are part of a so-called breeding programme. In these programmes, zoos manage the (genetic) health of populations. The conservation of animal species, which are increasingly threatened with extinction in the wild, is the number one priority.
The EAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) supports cooperation between European zoos and aquaria on education, research and species conservation. They bring in experts to determine whether a species needs a breeding programme and give advice to gardens keeping the specific species, for example in terms of housing or whether or not to breed with a species. There are currently 90 animal species living in ARTIS that are part of a European breeding programme.
Beyond the borders of ARTIS
ARTIS also contributes to nature conservation outside its own borders. It supports various organisations working to protect the natural habitats of animal species, thus saving wild populations from extinction.
Among others, ARTIS supports the organisation SANCCOB, in South Africa. Their focus is on protecting the African penguin. By doing research, education and by providing shelter for the birds, they do not only help the African penguin, but also all other seabirds in that area.
Nature around the corner
ARTIS is the backyard of many Dutch people, the green lung of Amsterdam and a special meeting place for young and old. Not only people love ARTIS, many native animal species make ARTIS their home. Bats have a place to rest near the elephant enclosure and swallow nests hang under the ornamental bridge near the Chilean flamingos.
Moreover, the team of gardeners provides a species-rich, botanical garden in which there is always something blooming as an enrichment for insects . In the most urbanised area of the Netherlands, ARTIS gives space to countless native plants, insects and other species and thus plays an important role in preserving the region's biodiversity.
Education & research
Nature conservation comes with education and research. It is necessary to create more awareness among humans about their role in and dependence on nature. ARTIS therefore provides educationto its visitors and supports nature conservation organisations involving local people.
ARTIS has been opening up the park to research since its beginning. Scientific research provides new knowledge and information about animal welfare, evolution and biodiversity. This helps us become a little better and more successful every day. ARTIS works closely with universities, colleges and other knowledge institutes, both nationally and internationally.