During my visit down South to Victoria, I took a trip to Melbourne Zoo.  I was delighted to find out it is part of the group Zoos Victoria, which is the world’s first zoo to achieve carbon neutral certification.  They have also joined Carbon Neutral Network through sound carbon reduction onsite and securing habitat to protect biodiversity through the purchase of carbon offsets.  They are also working to reduce, reuse and recycle in as many ways as they can, improve their energy efficiency and reduce their water consumption.  Reading about this kind of stuff always makes me feel a little better about visiting zoos, they are one of those grey areas and I never know exactly where I stand.  That animal cruelty/conservation debate... yikes!  But one thing is for sure, the butterfly house was incredible!  I have always wanted to visit one and it definitely lived up to my expectations.  I was not leaving until I was 100 percent happy with a snap - and I got a goodie!




While I was visiting the Zoo, National Geographic were holding Photo Ark - a photo exhibition using the power of photography to inspire people to save unique species, before it's too late.  National Geographic, through Photo Ark, is pursuing the ambitious goal of photographing every species in the world's zoos and wildlife sanctuaries, to inspire action through education, and help save wildlife by supporting on-the-ground conservation programs.  National Geographic photographer, Joel Sartore, is aiming to create intimate portraits of an estimated 12,000 species of birds, fish, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates by the end of the project.  Once completed, the National Geographic Photo Ark will serve as an important record of these animals’ existence and a powerful testament to the importance of saving them.


It was so overwhelming to see all the beautiful portraits of so many threatened, endangered and extinct species.  Seeing such an incredible collection of photographs of such precious creatures, makes me even more motivated to do my part for this planet.  So many beautiful words were painted around the gallery, but a quote by Margaret Mead stood out to me the most:


"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."


You can visit Melbourne Zoo in Victoria, Australia and you can read more about Zoos Victoria's sustainability here and National Geographic Photo Ark here.