The Alameda Wildlife Park began in 1994 as a collection of parrots, land tortoises and monkeys all confiscated from illegal traders who were passing through Gibraltar. The local Customs authorities handed these animals to G.O.N.H.S., (Gibraltar Ornithological and Natural History Society), who did their best to help.
At first there were no enclosures to house them but, with help from G.O.N.H.S. volunteers and the permission of Wildlife (Gibraltar) Ltd, a number of cages were built at the Alameda Gardens.
Due to lack of space and the number of confiscated animals, the Alameda Miniature Golf course was cleared after many years of neglect and modified into a small conservation park, again entirely through volunteer help.
Although the main purpose of the Wildlife Conservation Park was to house confiscated animals, it became apparent that, if finished properly it could also be open to the public to make people aware not only about illegal animal trade but also about local wildlife conservation.
The Park became important for the care of native species that are considered for future re-introduction to the Gibraltar Nature Reserve, like for instance, the Barbary partridge, red fox or the raven.
Opening to the public also meant that income from entrance fees would all go towards the care of these animals' food, medicine and building materials for enclosures. Lack of funding has meant that most of the work on enclosures and plant beds has been carried out by a few dedicated volunteers.
In 2013, after generous funding from the Parasol Foundation (formally the Bonita Trust) and Gibraltar Government, the park re-opened to the public after extensive renovation to create immersive, natural rock work habitats and exhibits for it's animal inhabitants.
Future projects include a Local Biodiveristy Education Area, quarantine area and Indiginous species exhibit.
With help from volunteers and sponsors, we can give these animals a full interesting life and also help our local wildlife.
The AWCP has become an important educational resource for local schools, helping to raise awareness of not only the rich local biodiversity but also of wider conservation issues.
If you would like to sponsor any of our current or future projects, contact us on our Contact Page.
What we did and how we did it..
Consignments of animals were confiscated by Gibraltar Customs in 1994.
Parrots found in atrocious conditions, many birds perished.
Pigtailed and Long-tailed macaques were found on a ship in the Straits by Gibraltar customs. The Long-tailed macaques can still be seen at the park today. The Pig-tailed macaques (Boss & Tonta) were re-homed to Stichting AAP in the Netherlands. They are now with other Pigtailed macaques in more suitable social groups.
The AWCP is built upon the old miniature golf-course in the Botanic Gardens. Some features can still be seen today.
Volunteers from GONHS help to renovate the derelict Mini-golf course with help from EU Funding and funding from Gibraltar Government
Enclosures were built quickly to house the confiscated macaques but also some Barbary macaques from the Upper Rock. These macaques had lost their groups for various reasons. Captivity was their only option.
Over the years, the collection grew to include Exotic pets and surplus zoo animals in need of a good home.
The fruit bats arrived from Jerez Zoo in Spain. In 2003, after a lot of hard work by volunteers and a few staff funded by Gibraltar Government the Wildlife Park opened its gates to the first paying customers.
Many unwanted exotic pets continued to flood in. There was obviously a real need for education on exotic pets and the illegal pet trade. The park began to hold educational talks and tours to local schools.