The Toronto Zoo’s 10-year, $250 million fund-raising campaign will generate just $16 million over its first five years, according to estimates of zoo staff. The modest start continues to raise questions about the wisdom of the zoo jettisoning its fund-raising foundation last year, says Coun. Paul Ainslie, a director of the zoo.

A report to the zoo board from acting chief executive Peter Evans showed that the zoo will raise no money toward its $250 million capital campaign this year, and forecasts $731,000 next year.

It says it forecasts the zoo will raise a total of $16.2 million over the first five years of the 10-year campaign. That would leave $233.8 million to raise in the final five years.

The zoo board voted to terminate its relationship with the Toronto Zoo Foundation a year ago, after complaining the foundation wasn’t raising enough money.

Ainslie said the latest report shows the zoo board’s $250 million target was optimistic.

“I stand by what I’ve been saying all year long,” Ainslie said. “Those numbers are unrealistic, they need to be changed, but my colleagues don’t want to change them.”