8th September monthly meeting report
President, Gill Roffey, welcomed 54 members and guests (1 from Canada) to the September meeting. The record of the last meeting was approved and signed. Members were reminded that it was the Annual Meeting in October and that it was not too late to put themselves forward for nomination for the committee or to nominate someone but please get their permission first.
Possibly the most important piece of information to come out of the business section of the meeting was that Christmas Lunch will be at Lympne Castle on Monday December 11th. For more details click on the link our events page.
After the coffee break we welcomed Carl Holt an Education officer from the Aspinall Foundation. John Aspinall bought Howletts in 1958 and Port Lympne in 1973. Howletts was opened to the public in 1975 and Port Lympne in 1976. After this brief history of the Aspinall Foundation Carl moved on to the conservation work that is being carried out today.
In Tanzania, there are reserves for the Black Rhino which is critically endangered due to poaching for the horns of the animals which are greatly prized in many cultures. To date 8 rhinos have been sent back to the reserves. Port Lympne has 8 rhinos and Howletts 4. The foundation has a million acres of reserves in Gabon and the Congo for Gorillas. The reserves are in remote areas and are monitored by hidden cameras. There was great surprise when a lion appeared.
Lemurs are protected in Madagascar on 13 sites and there are 2 sites in Java for gibbons where 100 have been returned to the wild. Carl told us that 3 zebras and 6 bison have also been returned to the wild. There were many questions put to Carl at the end of his very interesting and informative illustrated talk. Edna Marsh gave the vote of thanks.
Click on feedback on speaker’s to read members’ reactions to this month’s talk.