Honoring Their Stripes: Four Zebras were Transferred from the Ramat Gan Zoo to the newly renovated Qalqilya Zoo

 

​This morning, the Palestinian zoo in Qalqilya received four new zebras from the Ramat Gan Safari. The transfer of the animals was made as a gesture in honor of the renovation of the zoo. Such a transfer has been made several times in recent years, as a result of the cooperation between the zoos and the regular meetings taking place over the years.

This morning, the Civil Administration, in cooperation with the Ramat Gan Safari, the Crossing Points Authority and the Qalqilya Zoo, coordinated the transfer of four zebras from the Ramat Gan Safari, where more than 2,000 animals of over 200 species reside, to the Palestinian zoo. The Qalqilya Zoo is the only zoo in the territories of the Palestinian Authority, covering an area of 2 square kilometers, and is the home of giraffes, hippopotami, lions, lionesses, bears, alligators, camels and more. The zoo has recently been extensively renovated by the Dutch zoos architect Erik van Vliet, who also designed some of the advanced court yards of the Ramat Gan Safari. The transfer included two males and two females, in order for the animals to continue to procreate, and was carried out as a gift, following the renovation of the Palestinian zoo to meet the proper conditions for the habitation of the animals.

 

This is one example of the many civil issues entrusted to the Civil Administration. Lead by the Staff Officer of Agriculture, Mr. Samir Muadi , who received the request, the event was coordinated and the animals were transferred through the Eliyahu Crossing to the territories of the Palestinian Authority. "By coordinating with the Palestinians we ensure the smooth transfer of the animals," said Muadi. "Coordination is also made with senior officials at the Qalqilya Zoo, who have been looking forward for a long time to the arrival of the zebras."

This case is not unique and is part of the long cooperation between the Ramat Gan Safari and the Qalqilya Zoo. This cooperation includes coordination, courses, professional training and guidance for veterinarians and professionals in Qalqilya. And thus, the transfer of additional animals has been made over the years with the coordination of the Civil Administration, such as lions and hippopotami, for the benefit of the animals and the development of the new zoo. "I am proud to mediate between two different institutions that share the same goal – to protect animals and to expose visitors to animals who do not exist in our area," added Muadi. "The Qalqilya Zoo is quite new, and the transfer of animals is an excellent opportunity for its staff to learn from Israeli zoos about the caring and handling of various animals. Receiving the zebras at the zoo is another step on the way to increasing the number of visitors and strengthening internal tourism in the area of Qalqilya."

 

The transfer was conducted following an examination of the conditions at the zoo, in accordance with a decision made several years ago by the Israel Zoos Association, to refrain from transferring animals to zoos that fail to meet the highest standards. "I have been in regular contact with the veterinarian of the Qalqilya Zoo, Dr. Sami Kader, for over 20 years. He continues to attend every professional course and training conducted at the Safari for veterinarians by the Israel Zoos Association, and tutors veterinary students at the Qalqilya Zoo," added Dr. Igal Horowitz, the Safari's veterinarian.

Dr. Kader closed the exciting event with a request from the Staff Officer of Agriculture, Mr. Samir Muadi, to coordinate and organize additional courses for his people regarding the proper care and handling of animals at the zoo. "We are glad to provide the tools and the professional knowledge to our neighbors, and we will indeed act accordingly, to conduct this training as part of our wider training program," Muadi concluded.