Broad-nosed bamboo lemur in an indoor enclosure of Cologne Zoo | Photo:

Cologne Zoo can cover running costs only until end of February

Published on the 30.12.2020. | By: Christine Bähr

Three million euros in losses in the year 2020 due to the lockdown – how long can Cologne Zoo still hold out? Savings will last until the end of February 2021.

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Sclater’s lemur (Eulemur flavifrons) in the Madagascar-House of Cologne Zoo | Photograph:

Note: While last year politicians complained about “excessive discussions about opening up again”, we are now witnessing “excessive discussions on prolongation” with protagonists like Karl Lauterbach (from the SPD), who even demands an indefinite lockdown – clearly contradicting current research:

  • Chaudhry et al. (2020): “[G]overnment actions such as border closures, full lockdowns, and a high rate of COVID-19 testing were not associated with statistically significant reductions in the number of critical cases or overall mortality”.
  • Loewenthal et al. (2020): “We would have expected to see fewer Covid-19 fatalities in countries with a tighter lockdown, but the data reveals that this is not the case”.
  • De Larochelambert et al. (2020): “Stringency of the measures settled to fight pandemia, including lockdown, did not appear to be linked with death rate”.

Lauterbach’s calculation – that harsh measures automatically lead to lower death rates – does not add up. Three independent studies have proven this with various approaches. This is why it is so important to purposefully choose effective measures. Zoos and aquariums have proven that they can operate without turning into hotspots or favouring the spread of the pandemic. Therefore, keeping them closed is beyond any scientific research.

Zoos and aquariums are part of the solution and not the problem:

Corona: Zoos können dazu beitragen, dass sich eine solche Epidemie nicht mehr wiederholt

Institutions like Cologne Zoo play an important role even far beyond Germany’s borders because they actively engage in conservation and the survival of many species depends on them. Hence the importance of zoos and aquariums returning to a normal operation as soon as possible – if necessary, with a transition period including partial openings and a hygiene concept.

Corona-Lockdown bedroht das Überleben von Arten

The work carried out by zoos and aquariums is indispensable for a sustainable concept of the future. The future of many species is at stake, but also that of the human race.

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