La Ménagerie, le zoo du jardin des Plantes

Dans le Jardin des Plantes : 57 rue Cuvier, 2 rue Buffon, 36 rue Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire, place Valhubert, 75005 Paris, France

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Menagerie, historical zoo in the heart of Paris, has more than two centuries. Opened in 1794 it has seen all living species in captivity and is now home to 1800 animals. Place to stroll with the family, this is the busiest of the Botanical Gardens website with more than 720,000 visitors in 2010. One of the oldest zoos in the world Menagerie of the end of the eighteenth. In 1792 the intendant of the Garden, Bernardin de Saint Pierre, mentioned the need to create a menagerie. A year later, a municipal decree terminates the exhibitions of wild animals in the streets of the capital. These first residents are accommodated in temporary facilities. The owners of the confiscated animals become the first "trainers". In 1794, the menagerie of Versailles is transferred to Paris, and that of the Duke of Orleans. From 1798, arriving elephants, lions, camels, ostriches, bears, buffalo and a few celebrities including Zarafa the giraffe first seen in France, offered to Charles X by the Viceroy of Egypt in 1826. Martin, Bear brown also was one of the stars and today there Nénette orangutan mom born in 1969 in the forests of Borneo, a boarder at the Museum since 1972 and raised four son. Bitch was the subject of a documentary by Nicolas Philibert. An original architectural heritage The long history of the Menagerie is in its buildings, all classified. Raw "factories": small log cabins, mud and thatched roof, for small species, buildings designed to accommodate larger animals, such as the "Roundhouse" (1802), whose shape evokes the Legion of Honour , or the large aviary, built in 1888 by architect Miles Edwards. The art deco style is also present in the Vivarium (1926), the Singerie (1936) and FAUVERIE (built by René Berger, architect also of the Grand Serre, in 1937). A precious heritage that can be discovered along with its occupants. Properly installed occupants 240 mammals orangutan, snow leopard, clouded leopard, gaur, kangaroo, red panda, capybara - 390 birds - 206 turtles, crocodiles, lizards and snakes - 138 amphibians - 896 insects, crustaceans and spiders live in the Menagerie. Births are always events, such as baby clouded leopards, last summer. For the welfare of the animals we try to reproduce as much as possible the natural habitat structure: branches and ropes for tree, water areas for the inhabitants of wetlands. Enrichments, food, sensory, social, cognitive and are every day made available to ensure animal welfare A place of survival for endangered species Menagerie involved in biodiversity conservation (ex situ) This major orientation manifests itself both in terms of research missions that the choice of animals presented and information to the public. Today 30% of visible menagerie species are rare and endangered species in their natural habitat. Gaur, Przewalski horses, orangutan, snow leopards and clouded part of breeding programs coordinated at European level (PEA). Recently a Gaur born in the Menagerie was returned to Cambodia in Phnom Tamao zoo in the country of origin for reproduction and possible reintroduction of its offspring. A monkey species crowned mangabey, it is left for the zoo Accra (Ghana). Considered extinct in the wild in 1970, horse Pzrewalski are the subject of a reintroduction program in the 1990s in the steppes of Mongolia. A new space, the aviary deserts, will host in autumn 2011 of Houbara Bustard and other birds of the Arabian Peninsula. The desert environments will also be discussed by the renovation of the largest enclosure of the Menagerie in which Arabian oryx will be presented. This species extinct in the wild is the subject of reintroduction projects. Biodiversity is not limited to the remarkable species, iconic and charismatic. All around us there is an ordinary nature whose degradation often goes along with a decrease in quality of life. Lizards, bees, foxes, insects, nesting birds ... 12 stations in the space of the Menagerie punctuate an entertaining and informative way. We learn not only what threatens these animals but also to make gestures to try to guarantee a livable space.

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