Bringing the tropics of Hawaii to Gloucestershire, Slimbridge Wetland Centre has introduced an exciting new exhibit that celebrates the WWT’s worldwide conservation efforts.
Home to the nature reserve’s collection of nēnēs – or Hawaiian geese – Mission Possible is an immersive exhibit that explores how the WWT helped to save this rare wetland species from extinction and continues to help the population today.
With only 30 native nēnēs left in the 1950s, WWT founder Sir Peter Scott sent three of the birds to Slimbridge, where he started the world’s first captive breeding programme for the much-loved Hawaiian goose.
The programme was a great success, with Scott returning to Hawaii in 1979 to release 200 birds on the island of Maui, their native home. With the natural grassland long gone, he discovered that the only surviving wild nēnēs lived on golf courses.
Mission Possible recreates this landscape, with a small golf course and club house for visitors to explore as they meet Slimbridge’s nēnēs.
There’s the chance to handfeed the residents and visit the duckery, where young nēnēs are being raised and eggs are waiting to hatch – with the WWT continuing to successfully breed the geese in captivity for release back into the wild.
Plus, take a look behind the scenes to discover the trailblazing techniques and technology the WWT use to help bring endangered species back from the brink of extinction.
Mission Possible is now open and anyone who wants to discover the species saved from extinction must pre-book their tickets to Slimbridge Wetland Centre online.
For more information, and to book tickets, visit wwt.org.uk/slimbridge.