Conservation in Asia
In Southeast Asia, people and wildlife frequently share landscapes due to high human population density and a loss of natural habitats resulting from large-scale agricultural operations. Human-wildlife conflict is often the consequence. This is a central theme of the Toyota Elephant Passage, and the idea of saving wildlife by helping people is a central theme in Denver Zoo's conservation efforts in Central and Southeast Asia. The Toyota Elephant Passage exhibit storyline is designed to increase awareness of animal conservation in these regions and encourage visitors to take action by joining Denver Zoo's efforts to save wildlife by helping people.
In countries such as Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Vietnam, the loss of wildlife habitat has led to increased human-elephant conflict, including frequent raiding of agricultural crops by elephants. Denver Zoo believes this is a critical issue for elephants in the region and therefore has provided support for mitigation work in these countries. Denver Zoo is proud to currently help with human-elephant conflict-mitigation programs in Vietnam, Malaysia and India.
Denver Zoo provides support for the ecological understanding and conservation of clouded leopards in Borneo. The primary goal of this project is to establish protected forest corridors to link seven existing national parks into a network of sanctuaries that will sustain clouded leopards and biodiversity generally. Denver Zoo also is directly involved in a collaborative project based in Thailand that aims to improve captive management of clouded leopards and increase the success of captive breeding programs worldwide.
Greater One-Horned Rhinoceros
In 2011, Denver Zoo began providing financial support for a greater one-horned (GOH) rhinoceros conservation program led by the International Rhino Foundation. GOH rhino populations, which were as low as 200 individuals in the 1990s, have been on the increase and are now estimated to be more than 2,500. Support also is given to the World Wildlife Fund and the American Association of Zoo Keepers for GOH rhino conservation in Nepal, which supports anti-poaching ranger patrols at Chitwan National Park, and the construction of fences in areas where human-wildlife conflict is high.