Curraghs Wildlife Park has finished its works on the gibbon enclosure, with help from two companies and the University College Isle of Man.
Volunteers from Tower Insurance Company Ltd and Utmost International helped to install new climbing ropes and a swing and feeding platform.
The work was made possible with a new 2km high working platform that was donated by Tower Insurance, which enables people to work safely at height on projects around the Wildlife Park.
Staff and students from UCM have been clearing vegetation around the gibbon enclosure whilst a team from Utmost International used a punt to get onto ‘Gibbon Island’ to cut back vegetation and fit new climbing ropes amongst the trees.
Members of the Supporters of the Curraghs Wildlife Park (SCWP) have also re-strung the rope bridge which the gibbons use to move from their indoor housing to their island.
Kathleen Graham, Curraghs Wildlife Park general manager, said: ‘Silvery gibbons are an endangered species and our gibbons are an important part of a collective breeding programme managed by the European Association of Aquaria and Zoos (EAZA).
‘We also support work in Java to protect wild populations of these beautiful animals.
‘We are very grateful to the organisations which have helped to refresh the home of our gibbons – they are certainly enjoying their new equipment and our visitors have great views of them at rest and play.’
Graham Harvey, SCWP work party leader, added: ‘The physical and financial help of companies in our community help us to carry out projects which improve and enhance facilities for both the animals and visitors to the Curraghs Wildlife Park.
‘We are very grateful to Tower Insurance for providing our working platform as this will enable us to undertake tasks previously out of reach from us.
‘We are looking forward to working on a variety of projects with more teams from local companies through the summer, really making a difference for the Curraghs Wildlife Park’s animals and visitors.’
There are currently four gibbons in the park, including parents Slamet and Nukula, with Ffinlo and Aalin.
Meanwhile, a frame for the new spectacled owl aviary has been erected.
It’s five meters in height which will give the owls more flying space.
Spectacled owls like to sit on a branch and wait for prey to run beneath them, according to a spokesperson.
‘We have been improving space and habitat for our birds over the last few years (Australian aviary, Amazon parrots and eagle owl),’ they said. ‘The barn owl project will happen when we secure funds as the last part of our bird aviary improvements.’
Works have also been taking place on revamping the lemur enclosure.
Volunteers from HSBC Bank helped install new ropeways and a safety barrier last week.