Young environmentalists learn about endangered animals at Assiniboine Park Zoo

Some Winnipeg families braved blustery conditions on Saturday afternoon for a chance to learn more about the environment and how to protect our planet at Assiniboine Park and Conservancy. @_MorganModjeski reports.

By Morgan Modjeski

Some families in Winnipeg got a chance to see some animals threatened by climate firsthand at the Assiniboine Park Conservancy’s “Party for the Planet” on Saturday.

The families and youngsters learned how those animals can be protected.

“Some animals are almost in extinction at the zoo like the red pandas, and it’s good for the zoo to protect the animals and if they are hurt,” said young environmentalist Aidan Martin.

“The longer animals are alive, the more people can learn about them and rescue them.”

Aidan was just one of the folks at the Assiniboine Park Conservancy with his parents to take part in Saturday’s event.

A junior zookeeper, the youngster says it’s important to see the animals threatened by climate change up close.

“I can teach younger kids about them and when they are an adult, they can teach other people about it too,” said Aidan.

The event runs over the weekend and saw a few families brave the blustery weather. The “Party for the Planet” event also included “Zoo Chats” with animal care professionals and activities that teach kids about the animals that may be affected by the warming earth.

“It gives them a better appreciation for these animals, from what we understand, they’re all rescue animals, and here on display to help us educate ourselves and our children,” said Erin Martin, Aiden’s mother.

She says she’s always blown away by her son’s passion for animals and it’s a passion they can help embrace with the help of Assiniboine Park.

Martin also said it’s the environmental energy in children, like that of her son, that gives her comfort as the world faces numerous challenges related to climate change and shrinking wildlife habitat.

“It gives me a lot of hope,” she said. “He’s so passionate about animal wildlife, he wants to become a veterinarian, that’s his end goal, so it’s great that we have children that are so passionate.”

The event continues on Sunday with a cleanup of the park.

As for young Aidan, he had some advice for other youngsters out there looking to help the environment.

“To probably protect animals even if they’re dangerous,” said Aiden.

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