"Zoo of death", "zoo of horrors," these are the type of nicknames given to the South Lakes Safari Zoo in Dalton-in-Furness, a townin Northwestern England. Close to 500 animals have died in the past four years.An official reportspecified that between 11-16% of the animals in the zoo have died every year since 2013, close to double of the world average.
These deaths, which have been avoidable in most cases, are the consequences of severe neglect by zoo personnelle, for example insufficient safety measures or diets not adapted to the animal.Madeline Taylor, member of the British animal defense association association,Captive Animals' Protection Society (CAPS), visited the zoo in July 2016. She told The Dodo:
Things like a kangaroo who was emaciated. A lemur that had a sore on its side. A mongoose who had a visible skin condition with missing fur.... I think the most disturbing thing for me is that this has been going on for years. They've been told to bring things up to standard, and there's been a blatant disregard for the zoo inspectors. There seems to be ... a lack of willingness to take on board certain standards, so they can make basic requirements for the animals.
This same zoo was already citedin May 2013 whena Sumatra tiger killed a 24-year-old trainer after escaping his enclosure. After the incident, the park was ordered to pay a 255,000 pound (around $310,000) fine, but was allowed to keep its doors open.On Monday March 6, local authorities refused to renew the licence of David Gill, the zoo's owner, after a number of online petitions condemned it, one of which collected over10,000 signatures.The president of the commission in charge of giving out the licenses announced that the decision was unanimous, following the evidence of animal mistreatment and the disrespect of security norms. David Gill has the possibility to appeal the decision over the next 28 days, without which, the zoo will be forced to close its doors to the public.
While some zoos may be educational and informative, animals were not put on this earth to be trapped in small enclosures for humans to look at and take selfies with.They deserve to be in the wild, enjoying their freedom and not suffering cramped and terrible living conditions for the sake of visitors.To find out more about what you can do, visit PETA's campaign to shut down zoos.
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