Montreal – The A two-year reconstruction of the Montreal biodome It was raised very nicely – but some of the animals that called this place home did not return it.
The stress of this action and the many dangers proved to be too much for the 75 animals at the wildlife center, 3,000 of which were evacuated while their new ecosystems were being built.
Facility staff say the action was not really taxing and did not underestimate the impact certain decisions would have on the animals.
“I think it’s normal for us to have these difficult moments in such a big reconstruction project that has been going on for two years,” said biodom veterinarian Amiko Wang.
“In hindsight, we could have done it this way, but surely we did not do everything.”
There were many accidents that led to the death of the animals.
For example, housing bats in makeshift cages, the mesh has proven to be very abrasive, damaging the delicate skin on their wings and exposing them to infection.
“For some of them, we saw that the damage would lead to a much lower prognosis to return to the plane, so we made a manual euthanasia decision,” Wang said.
Forty-six bats of three different species were found dead or kept between April 2018 and March 2020.
The action also killed about 30 birds, including twelve terns and four seagulls, which were killed by a weasel as they penetrated their enclosure.
“In [weasels’] Biology, they do not necessarily eat what they kill, so it killed a lot of birds one after another, ”Wang said.
Other animals have inherent health conditions that staff suspect will be exacerbated by the stress of this action.
Two King Penguins will be at the Calgary Zoo to avoid further pressure to return to Montreal.
Now that the move is complete and the animals are back in their permanent habitat, the biodome is correct, and they can find out what went wrong.
“There are clearly some decisions that need to be corrected, and other decisions that we have seen, are the right decision,” Wang said. “So we have heaps to learn from all of this.”
She said she believes the newly rebuilt biodome will improve the lives of the animals, who will be cared for by dedicated and passionate staff.