Hi, my name is Stania Kuspertova.
If you are on this page, you’d probably like to know something more about me. I’ll do my best to tell you my story and explain you how it happened that a Czech lady went to the Catalan Pyrenees to create the Zoo of the Pyrenees. Take a comfortable seat, it will take us a while.
I was born in the Czech Republic in a small village of 8.000 inhabitants.
As far back as I can remember I loved animals and I was absolutely certain about one thing: I wanted to become a vet.
But though both of my parents worked with animals (my father was a veterinary technician and my mother worked as an engineer in milk production in one these large agricultural agrupation that were so typical in the eastern countries) they forbid me to study my dream career. Why? They surely had some good reason…
I was 17 when I first met falconry. The reason for it had green eyes, long blond hair and was 19 years old. His name was Jan. He taught me how to take care of birds of prey and how to train them.
We organized our own free-flying birds of prey exhibition. We realized: This is what we wanted to do for living.
But for starting our own business, ups, we needed money. We decided: Jan would look for a job abroad while I still had hoped that I could convince my parents about my future as a vet.
Leaving for Germany
But it was no way for them. I was 18 when I left my parents’ home and my country. With only a rucksack on my back I followed my boyfriend to north Germany, to the largest falcon breeding farm in the word. I was employed to clean and cook for the staff.
But as I told you: I loved animals dearly. Soon I not only cooked for the staff, but I took care of the falcons stock as well. (The other staff concentrated on the training of the birds destined for the Arabian market.)
And my life brought new changes.
Jan was not happy in Germany and after 2 years of relationship we slipped apart.
I stayed and lived a happy life surrounded by falcons, nature and a lot of work.
As time passed by, I got married to the owner of the farm and became mother of 3 marvellous children (Martin, Anna and Lukas).
Our falcons gained great reputation around the world, we travelled a lot.
I always felt urge to “save the world”. I offered my help to one wild-animal-hospital in Madrid and spent 6 weeks there. But I was treated with suspition for my “falconery origens” and I didn’t like at all the way they kept and treated animals. (I have been told the place improved a lot since my visit.)
My family spent beautiful time in the USA as guests of “The Peregrine Foundation”. I met with people who shared my preocupation for conservation of nature. American emprenedors who put large sums of money for environmentals projects and who were able to save Californian Condor from sure extintion. If you want to know more about thir miraculous project, enter the web site of Peregrine Foundation
But of course most of our journeys took us to the Arabian countries.
The most adventurous and exquisite journey I undertook was as a special guest of the Abu Dhabi Royal Family during the hunting trip to Pakistan. Nobody believed it! Never ever was a lady invited by Arabs to the hunting trip before!
But all the success and happiness didn’t last for long.
Our neighbour in Germany built a mushroom farm boarding with our company. Unfortunately he didn’t care for the environment and in order to spare money he didn’t apply the filters to his facilities. The air filled with spores and with invisible deadly spore toxins.
We move to Spain
There is no cure for lungs full of spores.
I cried over my dear falcons seeing them how the spores disabled them to respire, how their liver grew large until it killed them, how babies were born blind – all due to the mushroom farm.
We used the juristic legal way against our neighbour, but he was a rich friend of the local politicians. We couldn’t win.
To save our animals we took a quick decision.
My husband had a “finca” in the Catalan Pyrenees. We moved to Spain: our family, the falcons and our staff. The falcons with liver problems still were dying, but slowly hope turned to our hearts: there was future for many of them.
A new period of my life started, but I was restless.
I had great children, good job, I lived in a beutifull place but I always felt the urge to safe the world.
It was good thing to breed falcons for the Arabs. The hunting qualities of our falcons convinced them that the bred animals can hunt as well as the wild one and it helped to slow down the crazines of illegal wild-falcons-market.
But I felt it was not enought. I wanted help more.
Finally I decided to make a step and start my life on my own.
(Of course, there were more reasons to make this step. But I consider my private life private.)
My husband and me we made an ageement.
He kept all we earned and I got a small area with a house in the Pyrenees. My husband helped me to build the basic construction of the zoo (… in fact he helps some times untill now).
Zoo of the Pyrenees
I met Eloi and I found in him my soulmate and a perfect partner.
Three and a half year it took us to get all the permissions we needed and ½ a year to build the basic structure of the zoo so we could open on June of 2014.
And since then our life is full of happy and sad moments, we work as we never did before…
And here we are, this year our park will celebrate its 5th anniversary.
We hope it has a long path ahead.
For we love our work and we think that the job we do has a profound sense.
We hope that people who:
– visit our park and have the opportunity to see healthy animals in the show
– who admire the spectacular flight of our wild neighbours (vultures, eagles, falcons…)
– who meet, feed or cares some of the irrecoverable wild animals
That the sensibility of these people to the problems of the environment will grow and that they will help to protect the nature in any possible way.