New app gives Gibraltar’s mini Alameda Gardens zoo a new lease of life

IT might not be able to get the parrot to do the talking, but a new app could revolutionise the way visitors experience Gibraltar’s little-known, pint-sized zoo.

Jessica Leaper, manager at the Alameda Wildlife Conservation Park (AWCP), said the app, created by a UK startup, will make it easier to visit and support the project.

The AWCP started as a wildlife conservation park in the 1990s made up of exotic animals confiscated from passing ships, unwanted exotic pets or endangered species.

It opened to the public in 2003 and is now one of the smallest zoos in the world.

Leaper’s main challenges when she took over the zoo were modernisation and funding.

She wanted to increase visitor numbers by making it easier to find the park and keep them coming back for more.

App-ing the game

During last June’s BIAZA conference, she found out about app-makers n-gage, which had previously developed an app for Northumberland Zoo.

She said she was ‘blown away’ by how easy it would make it for her to run the wildlife park.

Leaper ordered the smartphone app for the AWCP and straight away saw new possibilities open up.

“Now that we have implemented the app, we are going to be looking to build on our school and education offerings and campaigns,” she said.

“We will also see how our corporate supporters can play a more meaningful role in what we do and where they can benefit too.”

Leaper now believes she will be able to focus on more conservation issues and get influencers on-board.

She will also be able to create QR codes to inform visitors as they walk through the zoo.

“Jess is now able to attract younger digital-savvy people into the park to help,” Bryan Hoare, CEO of n-gage.io added.

“It’s an ideal place for young volunteers to at once, develop skills and become more aware of the physical world around them.”

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