The Wildlife Division within Ghana Forestry Commission maintains the two main zoos in Ghana. WAPCA works with both zoos to assist with staff training and to implement and monitor the captive breeding, welfare and husbandry of the captive primates.
Accra Zoological Gardens (see map) is in the capital city of Ghana, located in the only forest belt left in the urban city known as the Achimota Forest, soon to be the Achimota Ecopark. In 2005, WAPCA constructed an Endangered Primate Breeding Centre (EPBC) on the Accra Zoo grounds; this facility is managed by WAPCA, in close collaboration with the Wildlife Division and the Manager of the Accra Zoo, Mr Stephen Tamanja.
Mr Tamanja, the Assistant Manager Mr Alfred Turkson and the entire Accra Zoo staff have been actively involved in the confiscation and rescue of orphaned monkeys, especially the Endangered white-naped mangabey and the Critically Endangered Roloway monkey. The orphaned monkeys living at the EPBC have been incorporated into the EAZA ex situ Program (EEP), whereby animals are exchanged with those in Europe to maintain genetic diversity and the long term survival of the captive population.
Since 2014 the EPBC has doubled in size with newer enclosures larger and higher. In 2018 the original EPBC enclosures were refurbished and increased in height. For full details of this refurbishment click here.
Kumasi Zoological Gardens (see map) is located in the heart of Kumasi, 250km from the Capital City Accra and is situated in the Ashanti Region. The zoo occupies a 1.5-square-kilometre (370-acre) area between the Kejetia Bus Terminal, the old race course and the Kumasi Centre for National Culture. The zoo was established in 1951 and officially opened in 1957 by the Asanteman Council to conserve nature and display indigenous wild animals of Ghana.
At the end of 2017, into 2018 WAPCA constructed a 0.4 ha forested enclosure within the wall of Kumasi Zoo. The enclosure allows the mangabeys to exhibit natural behaviours as they have opportunities to forage the forest floor and climb high into the canopy. In 2018 a group of seven mangabeys was transferred from the EPBC in Accra to the forested enclosure and, after a short period of habituation, the group entered their new 0.4 ha home. The group are continually studied to understand how they adapt to a more natural environment, this information will support any reintroduction feasibility programme. To read more click here.
Our main priority is maintaining high welfare standards for the primates at both sites, therefore we have implemented a daily enrichment programme and we regularly design and conduct behavioural training sessions to reduce stress in our veterinary procedures or enclosure moves.
WAPCA's forested enclosure at Kumasi Zoo