Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The zoo's point of view

Last week, a healthy 2-year-old giraffe unofficially named "Marius" was euthanized at the Copenhagen Zoo. Members of an outraged public staged a protest, signed a petition, and one individual even offered to buy the giraffe for $680,000 (€500,000). The zoo is a member of the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA), which has a mission of conserving global biodiversity and recommended the animal be put down because there were a lot of giraffes with similar genes in their breeding program. Two zoos had offered to take Marius, but one already held his brother and the other does not belong to the EAZA. Zoo spokesman Tobias Stenbaek Bro explained that a tenet of membership is that they are custodians of the animals, not owners, and can't sell them to anyone outside the organization who doesn't follow EAZA principles, which would rule out the individual who made the financial offer. The Copenhagen Zoo, by the way, doesn't castrate the giraffes or give them contraceptives because that could have unwanted side effects and because they value parental care. Instead, they went ahead with euthanizing the animal, using a bolt pistol instead of lethal injection so as not to contaminate the meat. With visitors of all ages present (IMAGE ABOVE), the giraffe was then butchered and fed to the lions, tigers, and leopards. Copenhagen Zoo's scientific director Bengt Holst pointed out, "I know the giraffe is a nice looking animal, but I don't think there would have been such an outrage if it had been an antelope, and I don't think anyone would have lifted an eyebrow if it was a pig."

1 comment:

  1. So my question is why in the hell did they put the animal down if there was nothing was wrong with it. But then to feed it to he other animals. Why?


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