Link to the Wild
Our global conservation projects
‘Link to the Wild’ supports in-country conservation across the globe. The projects are chosen and supported by our keepers here at Blair Drummond, and are often smaller grass-root initiatives.
Since 2014 we’ve raised over £204k for conservation projects. This money has been paid directly to the charities involved, often funding key salaries or paying for essential equipment.
Read on to find out more about some of the projects we’ve funded.
Chimp-friendly crops in Uganda
Chimpanzees are becoming increasingly rare in the forest regions of Africa. Deforestation means that much of their habitat is disappearing. The Bulindi Chimpanzee & Community Project works with local communities, teaching them to raise tree seedlings and grow chimp-friendly crops – ensuring that humans and chimpanzees can co-exist happily.
£52,350 donated since 2014
Rehabilitating vultures in South Africa
You may not know, but vultures are now the most threatened bird species in the world. Many birds are hunted and poisoned by pesticides and lead fragments from bullets, injured by electricity cables or hit by cars when feeding on road-kill. We work with South African charity VulPro to protect, rehabilitate and re-release vultures into the wild.
£32,980 donated since 2014
Fighting the pet trade in Barbary macaques
Barbary macaques are now endangered and are still frequently sold as pets and performers, and to provide tourists with photo opportunities. We work with Barbary Macaque Awareness and Conservation (BMAC) to highlight this issue within local communities and show how destructive the “photo prop” trade can be.
£13,750 donated since 2014
Lemurs and livelihoods in Madagascar
Madagascar holds 5% of the world’s plant and animals species, but deforestation is a constant threat and most lemur species on the island are now critically endangered. We work with Feedback Madagascar to educate local communities, help them plant their own trees and adopt eco-friendly, sustainable methods of farming.
£12,750 donated since 2014
Tiger fences in India
In the Bandhavgarh Reserve in India, Bengal Tiger numbers have suffered rapid decline due to habitat loss, hunting and lack of prey. One specific problem in the villages is uncovered wells. By helping The Corbett Foundation to fence these wells, we can save many tigers from needless injury and death.
Furthermore, The Corbett Foundation is working on mitigating human-elephant conflict by holding workshops for local communities to build their capacities in understanding elephant behaviour. They also provide high beam flashlights to help ward off elephants.
£9,000 donated since 2017
Protecting wild lions in Namibia
Now considered vulnerable to extinction, the lions in Etosha National Park in Namibia are frequently coming into conflict with humans. We work with AfriCat UK to help the Namibian Lion Trust to track the location of specific lions and protect them from poaching.
£6,250 donated since 2018
All-Woman Wildlife Protection Programme
South Africa’s 150,000-acre Balule Nature Reserve is a prime target both for local bushmeat hunters and organised poaching gangs. Since the Black Mambas were formed in 2013 to safeguard this area, bush meat poaching has been reduced by 89% and poaching incursions have been reduced by 88%.
By helping to pay for salaries and equipment, we can further empower these brave women to protect wildlife both day and night.
£500 donated since 2022
Protecting pinnipeds through rescue and rehabilitation
Marine mammals such as seals and sea lions are increasingly at risk of injury and illness whilst in their natural environment. Unfortunately, these risks are often caused by human disturbance. The Pacific Marine Mammal Centre rescue, rehabilitate and release marine mammals that need prolonged care.
By supporting PMMC, we are playing an active role in the development of their rehabilitation centre as well as helping to pay for the supplies necessary to care for these marine mammals.
£600 donated since 2022
Supporting ocean conservation in the Galapagos
Galapagos Conservation Trust (GCT) is the only UK registered charity to focus solely on the conservation of the Galapagos Islands. This group of islands is one of the most ecologically important areas in the world, but it is now extremely at risk.
By raising funds and awareness in the UK, we are helping GCT to support and deliver projects in Galapagos and respond to key threats facing the Islands. GCT focuses on restoring natural habitat, protecting threatened species and driving sustainable solutions, helping to contribute to the overall management of this unique ecosystem.
£600 donated since 2022
Protecting rhinos from poaching
More than 7,000 rhinos have been poached in the last decade. The number poached in South Africa alone has risen by 9000% in the last twelve years and is a huge and very real threat to wild rhino populations.
Working with OSCAP (Outraged SA Citizens Against Poaching), we’ve been able to provide essential equipment to game rangers working on ground level to protect rhinos. The charity also works to monitor wild rhino movements and rescue rhino calves left orphaned by illegal poaching.
£15,650 donated since 2014
Restoring the White-tailed Eagle to Wales
Once a big part of Welsh biodiversity, culture and heritage, the White-tailed eagle unfortunately became extinct in Wales in the early 19th century. Research has since shown that these eagles are an essential missing component of the marine and freshwater ecosystems in Wales.
Working with the Durrell Wildlife Trust, we are helping them to plan and initiate the reintroduction of White-tailed eagles across the Severn Estuary, with the overall aim of establishing a viable breeding population and building ecosystem resilience through the restoration of their key functions.
£250 since 2022
Rescuing Scotland’s marine mammals
Working with the Cetacean Research and Rescue Unit (CRRU) we helped to fund equipment which allows for the quick and efficient rescue of stranded or trapped marine mammals around Scotland’s coastline, including whales, dolphins, porpoises and seals.
£7,850 donated since 2017
Giraffe conservation in Uganda
Many people are unaware that giraffes are currently much more endangered than African elephants. We worked with the Giraffe Conservation Foundation to help fund the protection, and translocation, of vulnerable giraffe populations in Uganda.
£9,500 donated since 2016
Tagging tortoises in Mauritius
Wild giant tortoises perform a vital role in Mauritius, acting as grazers, browsers and seed dispensers, and helping to regenerate many unique plant and tree species. But historic over-hunting and the illegal pet trade have seen numbers dwindle. We worked with the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation to tag and monitor the endangered wild tortoise population.
£3,000 since 2017
Protecting the Mediterranean Monk Seal
The Mediterranean Monk Seal is Europe’s most endangered marine mammal. Working with the Hellenic Society for the Study and Protection of the Monk Seal (MOm), we helped to create a new marine protection area around the Greek island of Gyaros.
£4,500 donated since 2014
Tracking Raptors in Scotland (by phone!)
Because it’s so reclusive, the Goshawk is one of the least studied raptor species in the UK. In 2016, we were part of a cutting-edge new study, tracking the movements of wild goshawks using the ‘Movetec’ bird tracking system, which can connect to a mobile phone!
Working with the Scottish Raptor Study Group (SRSG) we followed a number of juveniles to adulthood and subsequently tagged their offspring.
£9,550 donated since 2016