September 2021 Edition
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Aurum Fund Management Ltd. Donation to BZS Black Mangrove Forest
ZOOM has gone Virtual!
Volunteering is a win for more than just your resume
BZS Lecture: Bats
Author donates part proceeds of book sales to Bermuda Turtle Project
Toddlers donate birthday money to the Bermuda Zoological Society
BZS Trunk Island Honey for sale!
TaRAYza has a friend - Buttercup!
Aurum Fund management Ltd. Donation to BZS Black Mangrove Forest 
From Left to right: Adam Hopkin, Director of Aurum Fund Management Ltd. & Colin Brown, President of the Bermuda Zoological Society

The Bermuda Zoological Society (BZS) is happy to announce that Aurum Fund Management Limited have donated $12,500 to the creation of a saltwater pond to support the growth of Black Mangroves on Trunk Island – the BZS “Living Classroom”. An anonymous donor also assisted with funds for the project.

The Black Mangrove (Avicennia germinans) are native to Bermuda, the Southern United States, and the West Indies. Bermuda is the northern-most place in the Atlantic Ocean where this species is found. Black Mangroves were listed as a Protected Species in 2011, as they are disappearing in Bermuda due to storm damage and coastal development. Their seeds do not grow in the water, and they do not germinate until deposited in a suitable location, so the Trunk Island saltwater pond will be developed just inland to create a safe environment for them to grow. The entire habitat will mimic Lover’s Lake in Ferry Reach and will be adjacent to a coastal Red Mangrove habitat so students can learn about and understand these vital ecosystems together and how they interact.

Adam Hopkin, Director of Aurum Fund Management Ltd. said “Aurum is immensely proud to continue our support of BZS with a donation to this fantastic project. It aligns so well with our support of other global environmental and species protection initiatives and it’s particularly special to be able to do this in Bermuda. Mangroves are often overlooked ecosystems, which are particularly rich in biodiversity and can sequester up to 10 times as much carbon as a terrestrial forest. The BZS educational programme will ensure their importance is shared generations of Bermudians to come.”

Black Mangroves provide essential ecosystem services in Bermuda’s wetlands: they form dense coastal or pond-edge thickets and groves which work together to stabilize the shoreline, provide buffers for storm surges, trap debris and flotsam brought in by tides, and provide feeding, breeding and nursery areas for many species of fish, crabs, shellfish, birds and other wildlife. Additionally, these ecosystems sequester carbon from the atmosphere and deposit it mainly around their aquatic root structures. Also known as Blue Carbon, this carbon capture aids in the reduction of green-house gases in our efforts to combat climate change.

Mangroves remain relatively inaccessible and thus underappreciated for their unique characteristics and value. The development of the Black Mangrove habitat will help all visitors to Trunk Island understand why mangroves are complex and vital ecosystems; it will encourage younger generations to take an active interest in their local natural environment. The walkthrough exhibit will allow visitors to experience the Black Mangroves and signage will communicate the associated conservation message, thus inspiring an appreciation for the significance of this critically endangered habitat.

“Thanks to the generous donation from Aurum Fund Management Ltd., the BZS has an opportunity to create a saltwater pond that will provide a safe habitat on Trunk Island for Black Mangroves to grow,” said Colin Brown, BZS President. “The habitat will give our education team the opportunity to teach thousands of students the importance of the Black Mangroves to Bermuda’s wetlands as they move through our education programmes.”
If you have already registered to participate in ZOOM Around the Sound, don't forget to collect your T-Shirt at tomorrow's drive thru collection at BAMZ, between 5pm-7pm.
Volunteering is a win for more than just your resume
Volunteering is a great way to contribute to the community and get invaluable life experience. And if you’re applying for scholarships, volunteering can give you an extra leg up. 

“Scholarship committees look for exceptional academic credentials, but also extracurricular activities, holding a job outside of school as well as volunteerism, which is an excellent way to stand out in the crowd,” said Jenna Viera-West, a recruitment associate at Island Employment Partners. 

“Volunteering, especially with community initiatives, demonstrates that you care about causes outside of yourself. It also shows that you can manage your time effectively while keeping up in school. As well, it can help you grow as an individual and develop skills,” she said. 

“You will, no doubt, also have the opportunity to network and build your contacts, which can be extremely beneficial.” 

Some high schools require a certain number of community involvement or volunteer hours as a prerequisite for graduation, usually in senior year. Volunteering and getting involved in the community before it is required can be an asset. The sooner the better is Ms Viera-West’s motto when it comes to volunteering. “Whenever the time is right for you to give your time, be sure that you take on the responsibility of following through on the commitment over a long period of time.” 
As a bonus, volunteering can be a great way to explore your interests and help you figure out what career path you might want to pursue in the future. You never know what can come of volunteer opportunities down the road. 

Plus, you might get to do something really cool. Joanne Chisnall is a volunteer officer at the Bermuda Zoological Society, a support charity for the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum and Zoo (BAMZ). “Unlike other zoos and aquariums around the world, students can volunteer behind the scenes in all areas including the Aquarium, Zoo and Museum. Depending on the commitment the young person can give, students can scrub turtles, assist with special events and help with fish or animal feeding,” she said. 

For young volunteers who are ready to commit or have a real interest in careers related to animal welfare, conservation, science or even teaching, BAMZ offers the Junior Volunteer Programme. A commitment of one weekend morning per week from October to June, volunteers are exposed to all areas of the facility. All volunteers are required to be a minimum of 14 years old. 

So what does BAMZ look for in a volunteer? “For all volunteers, the first thing we look for is the commitment that you are willing to give. Some of our volunteer experiences require training and input from our staff, and their time is valuable,” said Ms Chisnall. “We will choose your volunteer opportunity based on that commitment level. Volunteers are asked about their skills and interests, whether they are willing to get dirty (fishy) or work outdoors. What are their expectations of the outcome of volunteering with BAMZ? We ask if they know about our conservation and education programmes and if they took part in them when they were younger.” 

Taking on a volunteer job, especially at a place like BAMZ, shows you care. It also proves that you are committed, good with time management and value giving back to the community. As if that’s not enough, it helps you develop attributes such as interpersonal skills, which will be helpful throughout your life, not just during the scholarship interview process. At the end of a successful volunteer position, you can also ask for a letter of recommendation. 

When deciding whether a volunteer opportunity is a good fit, students should consider whether the organisation will help give them the skills and talents that will be useful to them in the future. Be honest with yourself and the organisation you’re applying to. “Does the organisation that you are interested in fit your ideals, your possible career path or personal interests?” Ms Chisnall said. “Remember in many cases (especially ours), volunteer positions can lead to job opportunities.”

For more information about volunteering at the Bermuda Zoological Society, call 293-2727 or e-mail

This article appeared in RGMags on September 10th, 2021.
Author donates part proceeds of book sales to Bermuda Turtle Project
Author Émilie Cossette, of has donated $210 to the Bermuda Turtle Project from the pre-sale of her book The Jewels of Bermuda.

“Since protecting and preserving wildlife has always been an important value for me, I decided to give $1 per book sold during the pre-order to The Bermuda Turtle Project, an amazing research and education organization on sea turtles in Bermuda,” said Ms. Cossette.

When describing the book, Ms. Cossette said “Ride the waves with Stella as she goes on an extraordinary underwater adventure with Duffy the green sea turtle. From angelfish to humpback whale, crossing a swarm of moon jellyfish with a detour to see impressive shipwrecks, this book highlights many fascinating treasures hidden beneath Bermuda’s turquoise waters.”

To purchase the book, visit her Etsy page.
Toddlers donate birthday money to the Bermuda Zoological Society
In June of this year Jamie Frick and his friend, Daria Cherapau, both turned 2 years old on the same day.

In lieu of birthday presents for the toddlers, their parents decided to request money as a donation for the Bermuda Zoological Society.

Between the toddlers' friends and family, they were able to collect $250. The money will support the BZS education programmes.

Thank you Jamie and Daria!
TaRAYza has a friend - Buttercup!
We recently announced that there was a new species in the North Rock exhibit; TaRAYza the cownose ray.

We are happy to announce that she now has a friend – Buttercup, the cownose ray!

Last month the BZS Trunk Island Project Coordinator, Trevor Rawson, spotted a cownose ray, a targeted species of the BAMZ collection plan, swimming near the docks of Trunk Island.

When Trevor contact our BAMZ Collector, Emily Andrews, she couldn't believe her luck, as she was actively looking for additional cownose rays for the North Rock exhibit.

Together, Emily and Trevor were able to safely collect her and after her quarantine period at BAMZ, she was introduced to the North Rock exhibit, where she can now be found swimming with TaRAYza. 
Support the Bermuda Zoological Society Education Programmes