We've found the property we want to purchase in Lompoc, CA. Here are some of the attributes of this property.
- The weather is more temperate than Santa Clarita.
- We will have the space to double enclosure size and double the distance between enclosures.
- We have an area to plant food for the gibbons & to plant native plants for local wildlife.
- The main road is paved and level. We will not be trapped in severe weather like we have been in the past and school buses won't get stuck.
- The well water won't run out and has its own generator.
- There is already storage for all of our equipment.
- The workshop to repair and expand all our enclosures already exists.
- We have a space for a hospital and recovery.
- There is a classroom for school children.
- The facility can easily host a conference.
- We have a place to house interns.
Dear Friends of the Gibbon Conservation Center,
Please help us Relocate this rare population of gibbons. The clock is ticking on our ability to stay at our current rented location in Santa Clarita. As you might remember, when our founder, Alan Mootnick, passed away in 2011, we lost ownership of our land, and in order to stay at our current location we had to start paying rent. This presented an unexpected financial burden, but at the time we could not fathom moving. Alan always dreamed of relocating closer to the coast and was actively looking for a more suitable property. Early last year we started negotiations with our landlord to purchase the 5-acre property the GCC is currently using. Unfortunately, we were unable to reach an agreement. We are currently at an impasse with the landlord and cannot renew our lease.
THINGS ARE CHANGING! WE NEED TO MOVE!
The land surrounding the Center is in the midst of a development boom. The open land that at one time provided the GCC with an ample buffer is slowly disappearing. As homes are built closer and closer to our facility, we are becoming increasingly limited in our ability to expand. The next planned housing development willextend right up to our property line, with high density housing not more that 500 feet from the gibbons, who are highly susceptible to increased dust and noise.
Additionally, there are serious limitations to our ability to improve our facility and offer more education and services at our current location. When we last renewed our permits with the LA County Department of Regional Planning (Zoning), they approved our application under the condition that we do not expand our facility beyond that which already exists. Furthermore, they changed our zoning from A2 to A1, which severely restricts how we can use this land. These strict zoning regulations make it unlikely we will get approval to build an on-site hospital, library, classroom, or housing for our researchers and interns.
Finally, with the weather getting more extreme, Santa Clarita’s arid climate is becoming less suitable for housing the gibbons. Our high-pressure misting system can cool their enclosures, but to do so we must have water in our well. During the most recent drought, wells in the Bouquet Canyon area were running dry. We were fortunate then that our well had enough water. We may not be as lucky next time. If our well runs dry, we will have to deliver water, at great cost, to cool the gibbons. A severe heatwave coupled with a drought would pose great danger to their health and safety.
THE FUTURE OF THE GCC IS IN YOUR HANDS!
To relocate the GCC, we need to raise at least $1,000,000. While we are raising funds to relocate, we also must continue securing funds for our daily operations, animal care and, unfortunately, rent. This is tremendous work for our small staff of two full-time & two part-time employees.
The GIBBON CENTER RELOCATION FUND will be used to purchase land. We will also need to raise funds to obtain permits, build the new infrastructure, and to move the gibbons. We desperately need your help to make this possible. Any donation will bring us closer to our goal of acquiring a permanent home for the GCC. Besides financial support, you can also help by promoting our fundraising campaign and sharing it with others so we can reach more people. Together we can work to secure the Gibbon Conservation Center’s future, create safe habitat for the gibbons and build a facility that will serve the gibbons and the conservation community for years to come.
The GCC is an internationally recognized organization in the field of gibbon research and conservation. We are among a handful of organizations around the world devoted to the protection of these small apes. The GCC provides consultation to zoos, museums, government agencies and individual scientists on species identification and gibbon care as well as assistance to gibbon rescue programs. Currently we house 38 gibbons encompassing 5 of the 20 different extant species.