To the Editor:

The passing of the text amendment by the BOC allows zoos in Morgan County. This will add an important component of agritourism to help our local economy. This project however is more than just a boost to the economy of the region. It represents a major element to educating our citizens and their families about the importance of the conservation and protection of wildlife and its value to the natural world. We are working hard to make the dream of a world-class part for rare and endangered birds and animals a reality for all to enjoy.

A lot of planning and research is required to meet the high standards set by our federal state and local governments. The safety of the public, the employees and the animals is highly regulated and supervised. That is why the safety records for this type of park is excellent.

Questions regarding the environment, disease and the health of the animas are addressed on all levels. The curators, zookeepers and veterinarians provide preventative vaccination programs and constant care. The American Association of Zoo Veterinarians states, “for the general of public the risk of contacting disease from most zoo animals is minimal to nonexistent.”

One zoo supporter wrote in a letter of support “in my mind a zoo represents a gift to the entire community. The individual gift of knowledge and love for animals and a deeper gift of social consciousness in the form of teaching the importance of conservation.”

We could not agree more!

We hope to see you at the zoo!

Michael Vaden and Bill Killmer

Madison

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