The owner of Ark Wildlife Park & Exotic Animal Sanctuary near Boston hopes it will become the “biggest dinosaur attraction in Lincolnshire” later this year.
The new dinosaur themed area will form a large part of the park’s makeover, which is still in its early stages, and will include Animatronic dinosaurs.
Jamie Mintram, who co-owns the park with his wife Michelle, told The Lincolnite, that they hope to have the new attraction open by late May in time for the half-term holidays.
Before then Jamie and Michelle will also be focusing on their fundraising appeal to help rescue three adorable kinkajous, an animal related to the raccoon.
The trio are part of a larger group of 12 who Jamie said were confiscated by authorities in Spain. The Lincolnshire park were asked by AAP, an animal protection organisation in the Netherlands, if they would be able to help rehome three of the 12.
Jamie and Michelle have the manpower to build the enclosure but to purchase materials they need to raise about £3,000 and are calling on the public to help raise the funds.
The park have said they will offer behind-the-sceens tours, entrance tickets, or encounters as a thank you for significant and corporate donations.
Although they are determined to reach their goal, Jamie admitted if they do not reach their £3,000 target it is likely they will not be able to proceed with the kinkajous project, so money in that case would be refunded.
Jamie told The Lincolnite: “Every penny helps, we are not a zoo so we don’t get animals in just as an attraction for the public, they are all genuine rescues. You would be making a massive difference to the animals’ lives by donating.”
This is still an exciting time for the park with the dinosaur attraction plans and more new animal arrivals expected soon.
Ark Wildlife Park & Exotic Animal Sanctuary has also been working with AAP on another rescue project, to bring to Lincolnshire five Barbary macaques, which are a large monkey species.
They are ex-pets who have been confiscated by the authorities in Spain and Germany, and AAP have asked for the Lincolnshire park’s help. The macaques will arrive in Lincolnshire in May 2022.
Another rescue project with AAP will see a couple of wildcats, who were previously pets, coming to the park during the same month.
The park’s owners are building an enclosure for the wildcats, having already raised the money for this. In addition, a group of banded mongeese will arrive at the park in May too.
Park owner Jamie Mintram told The Lincolnite: “With lockdown, being a rescue centre for exotic pets was curtailed, but now with restrictions easing we can do more.
“We work closely with a group in the Netherlands called AAP who do what we do but on a bigger scale.
“We agreed to take on some animals for them (wildcats, Barbary macaques, and mongeese) a few years ago. COVID and Brexit delayed bringing them over, and Netherlands had a very strict lockdown.
“We were also approached by AAP, who confiscated 12 kinkajous, which are popular in pet trading. They are trying to find a home for 12 and asked if we can take three, with potential homes across Europe for the others.
“As they are nocturnal a lot of zoos aren’t interested as there isn’t the same visitor attraction. We don’t have the funds, but if we can raise enough then we will give them a new home.”