The Delegation of Sustainability confirms that the hundred animals living in the reserve, including mouflon, deer, ibex and wild boar, will remain in their habitat and the Junta de Andalucia will guarantee all necessary resources for their welfare, food and maintenance. Unless a new company resumes project development in this space.
Antonio Calvo explained on Tuesday that the closure ordered by the Junta de Andalucia to the public in February 2022 has suffocated him financially, as he has had to care for and feed the animals, some of them without receiving income , having been rescued in appalling conditions, asks for more time to be able to carry out the security tasks required by the Andalusian administration, for which they consider highly.
However, the Junta de Andalucía wants to continue the project for this public forest, but with another manager, since the concession of this company has expired, due to systematic non-compliance with the concession and dozens of inspections. 15 breaches have been found, which represent a serious breach of the rules, they confirm, and the Council has an obligation to ensure the existence of responsible management, a manager who takes charge of this public forest in concession, Takes care of animals and who complies with the necessary security measures, above all, physical separation between animals, keepers and visitors, for example, during the mating season.
The Andalusian Administration states that at the end of August 2020 the company Andalucia Ecotour SL, represented by Antonio Calvo Aguilar, has been notified of the need for the rectification of deficiencies – currently not resolved – and, further, in February 2022 The opening of the disciplinary file and the closure of the facilities are taken as a precautionary measure to guarantee the safety and public health of visitors to the Center and the staff themselves; As well as the protection and welfare of wildlife.
After repeated and systematic violations of the Integrated Environmental Authorization granted in 2016 and in compliance with existing regulations, the Junta de Andalucía resolves to order the termination of the concession for the temporary occupation of land in the public forest to the company Andalucía Ecotour. SL, with the intention that the activity of the Zoological Park be developed by a new concessionaire.
Currently, the Junta de Andalucía has urged the company Andalucía Ecotour SL to eviction from the facilities for the second time, since the concession expires in February this year, but this does not mean the eviction of the animals, they explain, but the company of the concessionaire. so that environmental agents can take charge of the samples while a new company takes charge of the facilities.
The Delegation of Sustainability confirms that the 15 violations found represent serious violations of the rules that regulate zoological parks in Andalusia and pose a risk to the people who visit it and to the workers themselves.
The lack of an opening license from the Ojen City Council to carry out the activity or the lack of a Livestock Exploitation Registry from the Estepona Regional Agrarian Office is one of the irregularities found. Similarly, public safety is at risk due to the non-existence of enclosures that allow physical contact between wild animals and center staff and visitors; as well as public health to the staff and visitors of the center due to the lack of sanitary control over the animals in the center.
Violations relating to the management of hazardous waste or non-authorisation of works, infrastructure and equipment have also been recognised. Similarly, there is a lack of authorized infrastructure and equipment for wildlife management and the center’s facilities lack electricity and drinking water supply.
The Sustainability Delegation insists that the land on which the Ojen Eco Reserve is located ceased to be a hunting reserve (hunting reserve) no more than 30 years ago and in no case shall they be again, nor on their behalf There is no intention of the Junta de Andalucia that they become the same again.