How zoos in Var adapt to drought and heat waves

In the ZooParc du Cannet or the animal park Ginasservis, measures are taken to deal with drought and high heat. They relate in particular to economic water management.

Animals are naturally the first object of all attention, as are their surroundings.

Due to the drought, the water is no longer renewed in the pools, which are then cleaned. Photo Gilbert Rinaudo.

“Bring Shadow”

“We highlight the vegetation as much as possible to provide shade”, says Jean-François Garrabé, owner with his wife Marie, of ZooParc du Cannet. The long-term goal is for each enclosure to benefit from natural shade over more than 80% of their surface.

This year we planted about sixty trees of eight different species., punctuates the botany enthusiast. But due to the drought, development work has been suspended just like in the tropical oasis. This revegetation will continue, but it is therefore imperative to reuse and conserve water.

“We have large reservoirs to collect rainwater, which is used for ponds and irrigation. We are on a drip. This year we hardly irrigate, except for young plantations, they die.”

Like these palms, many plants have been planted on the 2 hectares of ZooParc. Photo Gilbert Rinaudo.

Automatic water dipping

For animals”it is the same. There are no basins, large tubs, but automatic watering machines. They constantly distribute the ration that the animals need. The water is thus fresher and renewed”.

Always on the cool side and especially to keep it, mulch – organic soil – will be placed in the corridors on the visitor route. “It drains, prevents weed growth, it’s clean. It gives an undergrowth side. Gradually, we will find partnerships with gardeners.”

For ten years, mammals have had automatic waterers at their disposal. Photo Gilbert Rinaudo.

Daily showers

Developments and projects are therefore targeted, but do the animals particularly suffer from high temperatures after all? “No, they’ve all been born in captivity for generations. We’re paying close attention nonetheless.” Especially when it comes to the choice of species. “For example, Tibetan yaks will leave in September for larger spaces. Other more acclimatized animals will be welcomed such as wallabies, raccoons, parrots, ostriches…”

Already there, dromedary, watusis, Somali sheep, Nubian goats have no problems with the high heat. Other residents – water buffalo, woolly pigs, alpacas, llamas… – have different needs and like pools”are drying out of the restrictions, they shower three to four times a day for their well-being.”

Every year, almost 40,000 visitors pass through the doors of ZooParc and can appreciate the effort.

In the animal park Espigoule, measures against littering

Young and old have plenty to do in the Ginasservis animal park. Shows and games are on the program, as there will of course be 250 animals. The latter has since this year “automatic paddle drinkers installed in each lane. They just need to tap to quench their thirst as needed and at will.”, specifies Stéphane Fatticci, president of the association La Ferme d’Espigoule. “This avoids spillage and evaporation. And the animals benefit from cooler water.”

A pensioner has special treatment to meet his needs as his name suggests. The Asian water buffalowatered regularly with a large jet. Wolfhounds also like water. “We put misters in their enclosure with a time delay. It switches off once every three hours. » To protect themselves from the sun and thus better withstand high heat, animals can seek shelter under trees. “We are lucky to have an oak forest. The parks are well shaded.

recycled water

Visitors also have the opportunity to cool off with the water games over 1,500 m2. “This water is recycled to avoid waste. It is used for irrigation. We put plants that do not require much water and for the others we limit watering. Always for the economy’s sake”we have installed dry toilets. It saves 60 m3 of water per year”.

And right now, everyone can see lions and their tamers until the end of September.

Leave a Comment