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Welsh Mountain Zoo aims to breed and help conserve endangered gibbons

02 Jan 2024 2 minute read
Lar Gibbon. Image: Rushen, Flickr

Colwyn Bay’s Welsh Mountain Zoo will improve and extend its gibbon enclosure as part of an international breeding programme for endangered animals.

Conwy County Council’s planning committee backed the zoo’s application as part of plans to improve the attraction’s historic gardens while helping to protect endangered lar gibbons.

Conservation programme

The planning application was submitted by the National Zoological Society of Wales to construct an indoor housing facility and extension of its gibbon exposure.

According to the planning report, the zoo on the Old Highway currently has one male lar gibbon but is hoping to begin a breeding conservation programme once a female is introduced, meaning the future family of gibbons will need more space due to animal welfare.

Lar gibbons are primates covered in blonde or dark brown fur that live in tropical rainforests in small family groups.

Illegal pet trade

The apes have a ring of white fur around their faces, are found in Southeast Asia, but are listed as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s red list, due to an illegal pet trade.

Cllr Alan Hunter proposed the committee backed the plans in line with officers’ recommendations, and this was seconded by Cllr Dave Jones, and the vote was unanimous.

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