Sir David Attenborough warns London Zoo charity risks extinction

Sir David Attenborough Credit: PA

Sir David Attenborough has warned that the Zoological Society of London risks "extinction" as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The broadcaster and naturalist is fronting a TV appeal to help save the conservation charity, which runs London and Whipsnade zoos.

The financial impact of coronavirus has left ZSL facing its biggest challenge in its near 200-year history, according to the organisation’s director general Dominic Jermey.

The society, which was founded in 1826, has been forced to close its zoos to the public since the end of March, meaning it has lost income. It was the first time the zoos had closed since the Second World War.

Giraffes in their enclosure at London Zoo

ZSL's Dominic Jermey added that the closure of London and Whipsnade zoos "put us under immense financial pressure."