New Bedford welcomes new director of Buttonwood Park Zoo

0

What drives a young man to want to dedicate his life to animal conservation? In the case of Gary Lunsford, the new director of New Bedford’s Buttonwood Park Zoo, blame the wild turtles.

“As a kid in the Oklahoma City area, I was kind of bonkers, and I can’t even explain it,” he said with a smile. “I think it was the passion to learn more about turtles that led me to 27 years of experience in zoos and aquariums.”

Lunsford moved to New Bedford via the Milwaukee County Zoo, and before that he was in Manitoba.

“When I went to Canada, my zoo career focused on polar bears, and it became an exciting time for me,” he said.

The master plan that Lunsford is eager to work on and bring to fruition with the zoo team and leaders makes no mention of polar bears. He assures that they would not mix well at the Buttonwood Park Zoo.

Courtesy of Buttonwood Park Zoo

Courtesy of Buttonwood Park Zoo

Lunsford said he found New Bedford to be a very warm and welcoming community, and a beautiful one.

“One of the things that struck me the most about this zoo is the beautiful city that surrounds it, which clearly loves and supports the zoo,” he said.

Courtesy of Buttonwood Park Zoo

Courtesy of Buttonwood Park Zoo

Speaking of families who love the zoo, Lunsford credits her father, a naturalist, for instilling in their family a respect and admiration for nature.

“That connection is compelling,” he said. “It’s also one of the roles that a zoo plays, to cultivate a connection between people and nature, so that people want to support wildlife conservation with pleasure.”

Courtesy of Buttonwood Park Zoo

Courtesy of Buttonwood Park Zoo

Buttonwood Park Zoo welcomes bearded emperor tamarin monkey

Buttonwood Park Zoo is home to the Bearded Emperor Tamarin Monkey and she has to be the cutest monkey you have ever seen.

20 things to see at Roger Williams Park (other than the zoo)

There are over 427 acres of beautiful landscaping, historic buildings and family spaces at Roger Williams Park in Providence. Gifted to the city in 1872 by Roger Williams’ last descendant, Betsey Williams, the park has become known primarily for its incredible zoo. But throughout this historic district listed on the US National Register of Historic Places, there are plenty of other amazing things to see.

Share.

Comments are closed.