Above: Keen fundraiser Summer with keepers and birds of prey from the show team at Paradise Park in Hayle, Cornwall


A SEVEN-YEAR-OLD GIRL who was inspired to help save vultures following a visit to Paradise Park in Cornwall has raised £201 for the birds.

In 2018, Summer Carson spent a day at Paradise Park with her family and was so taken by the vultures that she decided to start her own fundraising campaign (see Zoo Roundup, July 17, 2019). Now, one year on, she returned to the park to present her donation to the keepers.

Curator David Woolcock explained: “Summer’s mum Hayley contacted us to ask if her daughter could present the money from her fundraising efforts to the keepers. On a previous visit to the park, Summer had seen the Eagles of Paradise display, which features a palm-nut vulture [Gypohierax angolensis] called Tangee, our ambassador who gives us an ideal opportunity to explain the effects of vulture poisoning incidents, which are having a catastrophic effect on wildlife.

“Summer had been so taken by the plight of this species that she decided to help and promptly set about fundraising.”

Summer was presented with a certificate and gifts from the keepers during a special display at the park in August. She explained that she liked the way the vultures “help save lives” (by clearing up carcasses to stop the spread of disease) and has raised £201 with “cookie sales and all sorts of sales” during the last year.

Mr Woolcock said: “This was a wonderful achievement by Summer and will certainly help save the lives of many vultures.”

Summer’s donation will go towards the Poison Response Action project, which Paradise Park already funds and is a collaboration between The Hawk Conservancy Trust, Endangered Wildlife Trust and Reading University.

“Field staff are trained and equipped to neutralise poisoned carcasses and reduce poison-related mortalities, the probability of local populations going extinct is reduced significantly,” added Mr Woolcock.

To watch a video of Summer receiving her certificate, visit: https://youtu.be/aGkiFA-aLMs

To find out more about the Poison Response Action project, visit: www.hawk-conservancy.org/prk/

For more news from Cage & Aviary Birds, click here.

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