HO CHI MINH CITY: As customer numbers droop throughout the pandemic, Vietnam’s oldest zoo has scrambled to live on, corresponding to retaining fundraising drives, chopping pay and rising fruit and greens to feed the animals.
The greater than 150-year-old zoo in Vietnam’s industrial hub of Ho Chi Minh City noticed customer numbers dwindle by means of March because the coronavirus outbreak opened up. Then lockdowns close it totally in April and May.
Still, the zoo, constructed within the French colonial technology, has to fulfill operating prices of 180 million dong ($7,740) an afternoon and make sure greater than 1,400 animals are fed.
“Since we don’t know when the pandemic will finally end, we are trying to diversify our revenue streams,” mentioned Pham Van Tan, head of the Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens, noting how price ticket gross sales typically make up lots of the $five million annual income.
To assist pay the expenses, the zoo is now doing issues corresponding to rising plant life to promote to the general public, designing gardens for house owners and promoting fertiliser to farmers, mentioned Pham. Staff have additionally taken 30% wage cuts.
“We still ensure food supplies for the animals, but we try to provide them with seasonal food which is cost-effective,” mentioned Pham, noting the zoo used to be rising just about part of its meals provides at the town’s outskirts.
A up to date fund-raising pressure additionally raised greater than $100,000 in simply two days, whilst 25 tonnes of meals were donated for animals on the zoo, which has needed to droop plans to interchange animals for breeding the world over.
Zoo veterinarian Nguyen Baa Ph mentioned one of the vital animals were emboldened by means of having fewer folks peering at them.
Visitor numbers were slowing creeping again as much as round 1,400 in keeping with day, however smartly underneath the 12,000 in keeping with day ahead of the pandemic.
“Now it’s a good time to visit, since there are not many people,” mentioned Nguyen Thin Quay, a manufacturing supervisor, who used to be on the zoo together with his son and spouse.
($1 = 23,175.0000 dong)
(Writing by means of Ed Davies. Editing by means of Gerry Doyle)
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