Thursday, 10 May 2018 09:48

WAZA Extends Annual Conference Reach To 2022

Moscow Zoo and Loro Parque to host 76th and 77th WAZA Annual Conferences.

The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) will extend its reach across Europe with the selection of annual conference hosts for 2021 and 2022.

WAZA chose the Moscow Zoo to host the 76th WAZA Conference in 2021, and Loro Parque in Tenerife, Spain, to host the 77th WAZA Conference the following year.

Moscow and Tenerife beat out bids from Southeast Asia, North America, Africa and Europe. The WAZA Council made the decision following presentations and deliberations in Antwerp in April.

“Moscow Zoo and Loro Parque submitted incredibly strong bids to host a future conference and as our conference grows bigger every year, we look forward to being hosted by these two outstanding organisations,” said WAZA Chief Executive Officer Doug Cress. “WAZA conferences present an ideal opportunity to bring leaders in the zoo, aquarium and conservation communities together to discuss vital issues within the community, and examine how WAZA members can take leadership positions on topical global issues such as sustainable palm oil, plastic pollution, the illegal wildlife trade and species conservation.”

The Moscow Zoo bid was particularly attractive as it offered the opportunity to engage with zoos and aquariums throughout central Europe.

“Hosting the WAZA Conference in Moscow is a great event not only for the Moscow zoo, but also for whole zoological community of Russia,” said Moscow Zoo Chief Executive Officer Svetlana Akulova. “Not only will directors of the best zoological parks of the world get together, but also important international issues on nature conservation and the future of our planet will be discussed in the Russian Federation for the first time, with the participation of Russian zoological parks and aquariums.”

Loro Parque is a major tourist attraction in Spain’s Canary Islands, and successfully combines aspects of a world class zoo and a world class aquarium. “Loro Parque is very happy to have been elected to host the 77th WAZA Annual Conference in 2022,” said Loro Parque President Wolfgang Kiessling. “This important event will allow us to emphasize the significance of zoos and aquariums in preventing the extinction of wildlife. One of the examples, which demonstrates the extent of the contribution to this cause, is the common knowledge and expertise of the zoological parks in the breeding of endangered species, offering many species the only chance of survival.”

The 73rd WAZA Conference will take place in Bangkok, Thailand, from 21-25 October under the theme, “Wild at Heart.”, Future conferences will be hosted Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2019 and San Diego, USA, in 2020.