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Parc Safari extends its green initiatives

“Animals don’t like 40 degrees or 35 degrees any more than us humans,” says Parc Safari president Jean-Pierre Ranger of the heat wave that washed over the region last week. The scorching temperatures were a reminder of the important role the environment plays at the Hemmingford-based zoo, where green initiatives have long been integrated into the park’s development.

This season marks the first where visitors are not able to use their own cars to tour the drive-through Safari Adventure. Instead, families can board one of nine electric bush trucks free of charge to experience up-close animal interactions while on safari. “We were curious to see what the reaction would be,” says Ranger, who admits they were a bit apprehensive about imposing such a change.

The response so far has been very positive, and visitors are recognizing the significance of this decision, says Ranger. “We have been investing in sustainable development for several years now,” he explains, noting how the pavilions built in 2003-2004 rely on geothermal heat and cooling systems. The fleet of park maintenance vehicles is almost exclusively electric, along with the zero-emission bush trucks, which were introduced in 2022.

The trucks are wheelchair-friendly and can accommodate up to 50 people for the 25-to-30-minute trip through the safari. “We’ve got the capacity to handle the busiest days,” says Ranger, who insists visitors should not worry about long lines or delays.

 

The electric bush trucks are now the only vehicles able to access the drive through Safari Adventure at Parc Safari in Hemmingford PHOTO Parc Safari

 

Ranger says the start of the season has been busy, despite the fact that several attractions are currently closed for renovations, including the feline tunnels, the cheetahs’ plain, and sections of the Olduvaï Walkway. He suggests that favourable weather conditions have meant the work is advancing more quickly than anticipated.

“It is not impossible that three of the five enclosures will be open for the construction holiday,” says Ranger, including access to the lions. “Things are going well,” he confirms.

In the meantime, the water park has opened for the season, and the zoo’s latest additions, the kangaroos, can be found in the Five Continents Farm. As well, Parc Safari will officially inaugurate its Discovery Pavilion, which features a vast collection of minerals and fossils as well as the Animalium, on July 27.

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