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Thread: are zoos cruel?

  1. #1
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    Another coffee time debate.

    I wanted to take a group to a zoo nearby but some people complained that it would be endorsing cruelty to animals .

    What do you think? Personally I think if they save species, promote kindness and allow people to see different animals then they're a good thing but I can see the contrary view



  2. #2
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    I'm torn on this one. Generally speaking, I can't support zoos (or the circus).

    However, places like Disney's Animal Kingdom (the Cincinnati Zoo is another) do real work with the animals, keep them in realistic habitats and actually save species from extinction. DAK broke the code on elephant language and brought us to a new and fuller level of understanding those fabulous animals. Their work with gorillas is as groundbreaking.

    Most will depend upon the zoo, what they do for the animal species (in a greater sense) and how they keep those animals they have. DAK was once totally into reminding guests that we were visiting the animals homes, but they've eased up on that. I'm sorry to see it go by the wayside (that attitude).

    There is a zoo in Jacksonville FL that is horrible and should be closed down... we all know my opinion on Busch Gardens...

    As I said, for me, not an easy call.






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  3. #3
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    It depends what you define as 'Zoo' I have only ever been to a very limited number of zoos and I have been pleased with the quality of all of them (except Busch Gardens .)

    The conservation work a lot of zoos do is priceless and goes some way to correcting the wrong-doings of selfish humans. Our closest zoo (Chester) is one I regularly contribute to through donations and visiting. It truly is fantastic with realistic habitats and is always improving things for the animals. There is a LOT of conservation work done there; both in the wild and through breeding programs; especially their work for orangutans

    The other thing you have to consider is the education that zoos give to people! Without physically seeing an animal such as an orang-utan and being educated about how our day-to-day lives and the products we buy have a massive impact on the lives of these animals in the wild- some people would never really be able to make the connection between the two.

    I know there are many many bad zoos and I am not defending those, but I do promote and contribute to good zoos who make good choices and always put the animals first. You only have to speak to one of the keepers (I recently interviewed the head of the elephant house for our student news site) to see how much dedication goes in. If my entrance money can continue to fund that, and sustain the research and conservation that they do, then I will do it. After all, it is through human selfishness that the animals are in zoos- all they can do is continue to look after them well and re-establish the wild populations wherever possible. It is not always a case of being able to send animals back to the wild.
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  4. #4
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    what is so bad about bush gardens? i havent made up my mind yet whether to go next time? i must admit im not too keen on zoos or the circus. i thought animal kingdom was super, is bush gardens not similar??




  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by chief, post: 249449
    what is so bad about bush gardens? i havent made up my mind yet whether to go next time? i must admit im not too keen on zoos or the circus. i thought animal kingdom was super, is bush gardens not similar??
    I took issue with a number of the enclosures there, particularly the elephants and tortoises. This was a while back so things may have changed, but from what I remember I wasn't happy.
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  6. #6
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    Same here. The habitats were overcrowded to the point of being dangerous when we were there. (Years ago, to be fair). The elephants and hyenas in particular. I hated the treatment I saw the tigers getting (during feeding) it actually was the "final straw" that sent me from the park.

    I know our Issy likes it there, and no one can love animals (especially tigers) more than she, so I'm willing to believe they've made some major changes.

    After the first (and only visit, all those years ago) I contacted the agency through which you can report zoos for mistreatment of animals, it was that bad.






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