Edinburgh pelicans get the 'royal' treatment
11 September 2015
Royal London Group - the UK’s largest mutual life, pensions and investment company – has partnered with the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) to be the first sponsor of the new ‘Pelican Walkthrough’ which opened at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo this summer.
As sponsor, Royal London will help fund the Society’s conservation work for the eastern white pelican. This includes population studies and other projects to help secure their habitat, which is suffering from environmental issues including over-fishing and flooding which affect their food supplies and nesting sites.
The Pelican Walkthrough in Edinburgh is home to six eastern white pelicans. Whilst people can’t physically touch the birds, visitors are immersed in their habitat. Set among large ponds and cascading waterfalls, the pelicans’ new home is surrounded by plants and trees – including weeping willow trees, thought to be around 100 years old. Unobtrusive glass lets visitors see the majestic birds up close. Equally, it provides the inquisitive birds with a better view of their human admirers!
Commenting on the partnershipf, Emma Hill, Head of Brand & Sponsorship at Royal London, said:
“Royal London has a strong affinity with these beautiful birds and we’re delighted to be working in partnership with RZSS Edinburgh Zoo. We’re thrilled to help the Society communicate to visitors about this species and the issues they face in the wild. We put a pelican at the heart of our brand because it is a proud and dignified creature, which represents the role of 'provider'. Having served as a heraldic symbol of generosity for centuries, their regal connection aligns with our heritage which began in 1861. We can’t wait to start working with RZSS Edinburgh Zoo, to help visitors learn more about these quirky and majestic birds.”
Barbara Smith, Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) Managing Director, added:
“RZSS is delighted to partner with Royal London. As a non-profit conservation charity, partnerships such as this help RZSS to continue to carry out vital conservation work and research projects to safeguard species from extinction, both here in Scotland and globally. The sponsorship of the new Pelican Walkthrough also enables us to provide an exciting and immersive experience which our visitors can enjoy.”
NOTES TO EDITOR:
2. Did you know…?
- RZSS Edinburgh Zoo is home to six eastern white pelicans: the four older pelicans are called Xylia, Wilu, Timo and Samson; and the two youngest will be named when they are a bit older.
- Also known as great white pelicans, their natural habitat ranges from southern Europe into Africa.
- Their wingspan is second longest of all living birds (after great albatrosses) from 226-360cm.
- The beak of the male pelican grows in a long downwards arc, and females have shorter, straighter beaks.
- The male pelicans are bigger than females: males can weigh up to 15kg, and females from 5.4kg to 9kg.
For more information or to request hi-res photo, please contact:
- Nancy Baynes on 020 7506 6508 / firstname.lastname@example.org
- Gavrielle Kirk-Cohen on 0131 314 0383 or Rachel Goddard on 0131 314 0312 / email@example.com
About the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland
The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) was founded by visionary lawyer Thomas Gillespie, the Society was set up in 1909 'to promote, facilitate and encourage the study of zoology and kindred subjects and to foster and develop amongst the people an interest in and knowledge of animal life'. Today, it exists to connect people with nature and safeguard species from extinction. RZSS Edinburgh Zoo and RZSS Highland Wildlife Park are owned by the Society. More information at: www.rzss.org.uk
About Royal London
Royal London is the largest mutual life, pensions and investment company in the UK, with Group funds under management of £83.4bn. Group businesses serve around 5.3m policyholders and employ 2,922 people. (Figures as at 30 June 2015). The Group is currently moving all of its UK and Ireland life, pension and investment businesses under a new version of the Royal London brand. The Group's independent wrap platform will remain branded Ascentric. More information at: www.royallondon.com