Species conservation at Zoo Berlin
Zoo Berlin supports two thirds of all international endangered species programmes. By creating stable reserve populations and reintroducing captive-bred animals into the wild, we are making an important contribution to the long-term preservation of threatened animal species.
The scope of duties involved in the conservation of nature also includes the work that focuses on the conservation of animal species in human care. The first step in the international management of animal populations has been the establishment of stud books. The first animal directory of its kind was created in 1923 with the studbook for the European bison. The data of both African rhino species and the gaur, an Asiatic wild cattle, has been collected ever since 1966 in Berlin. The curator of the stud book coordinates the disclosure of animals to preserve the diversity of the genetic material in the population. Stud books may also include recommendations for the improvement of rearing conditions.
European preservation breeding programmes (EEPs)
In addition to the stud books, there has been the European preservation breeding programmes (EEPs) ever since 1985. They regulate the breeding endeavors within the European subpopulations of some particularly endangered species. Berlin Zoo was responsible for the EEPs of the black rhinoceros and the gaur for many years, and also successfully participated in numerous other EEP (see above). Some species of animal kept in Zoo Berlin were able to be introduced back into the wild after years of intensive nurturing in human care (e.g. Przewalski's horse, European bison, bearded vulture, Scimitar oryx).