The volunteers of local dive group Neptune’s Army of Rubbish Cleaners (NARC) have teamed up with Folly Farm to educate visitors on the dangers of marine litter and the impact it can have on wildlife.
Based for a day at Penguin Coast at Folly Farm, a team of divers from the local voluntary group joined forces with a giant penguin mascot and Folly Farm colleagues to draw in the crowds and spend some time raising awareness and welcoming contributions towards NARC’s efforts. Thanks to the interest on the day sparked by activities such as face painting and penguin bingo, more than £500 was raised. This brought the fundraising total to £1000 thanks to a further donation from Folly Farm for £500.
Dave Kennard, local diver who founded Neptune’s Army of Rubbish Cleaners 10 years ago, was at the event: “Along with our hard working volunteers, we step out year after year to tackle underwater litter and it’s brilliant to be getting this kind of support from Folly Farm and its visitors. So much of our time is spent cutting wildlife free after they become entangled in debris such as fishing lines. Everyone in Pembrokeshire and beyond needs to wake up and realise that the rubbish they are dropping into the sea off clifftops, beaches or boats is doing major damage to our beautiful coastline and wildlife. Please help us protect our coastline.”
Tim Morphew, Zoo Curator at Folly Farm, added: “We are committed to conservation at Folly Farm and help raise awareness of and funds for many in-situ and ex-situ conservation projects. It’s great that our Penguin Coast exhibit benefits the beautiful coastal county in which we operate and we are able to educate and hopefully change visitors’ behaviour through the iconic species of the penguin.”