Animal circuses peddle animal cruelty, not family fun.
A listing of circuses that take a stand against cruelty by not using animals.
Exactly what it is…I HATE circuses!!
The recent arrests of six suspected poachers on a vast wildlife reserve in Mozambique are seen by conservationists as rare good news in a country where elephants and other species are under extreme threat.
The poaching ring had been operating in the Niassa National Reserve, which is twice the size of South Africa’s flagship Kruger National Park, where the rhino population has been hit hard by poachers, many of whom cross over from Mozambique.
The Sept. 7 detentions in the southern African nation followed nearly a year of investigative work, illustrating the challenges of policing rugged areas where armed poachers hike on expeditions that often last two weeks and sometimes kill elephants with single shots targeting vital organs.
Some 200 scouts supported by a spotter plane and intermittent helicopter flights work in Niassa, an area of 42,000 square kilometers (16,200 square miles) that is home to about two-thirds of Mozambique’s elephants. Park managers have ruled out using aerial drones as a form of surveillance, saying the hill-spotted, woodland expanse in northern Mozambique, on the border with Tanzania, is just too big.
Niassa is one of many battlegrounds around Africa where conservationists are struggling to stop poachers, who have annually killed tens of thousands of elephants across the continent in recent years because of a surge in demand for ivory in Asia, primarily China. Authorities in the Mozambican park are planning more law enforcement operations in an attempt to break up the several rings known to operate there.
"There is no way that we are going to address this problem with a reactive approach," said Alastair Nelson, director of the Mozambique program for the New York City-based Wildlife Conservation Society, which manages the Niassa reserve along with the Mozambican government.
The recent arrests targeted a group with links to illegal ivory trade rings in Tanzania and is believed to have killed dozens of elephants this year, Nelson said. Four Tanzanians were among those detained and tusks and rifles were seized, he said in a telephone interview.
The suspects, who were arrested shortly after midnight in a house near the Niassa reserve, face charges including illegal possession of firearms and organized crime activity. They could be imprisoned and fined if they are convicted.
Mozambique has faced international criticism for not doing enough to crack down on poaching, but new legislation has stiffened penalties for poachers: Anyone who illegally kills an animal of a protected species can go to jail for eight to 12 years. The government is also starting to deploy environmental police into the Niassa reserve and elsewhere, according to Wildlife Conservation Society officials.
Mozambique’s tourism minister, Carvalho Muaria, has warned that poaching will hurt tourism and economic development, and authorities there have acknowledged the country is a transit point for the trafficking of South African rhino horns bound for Asia.
"Mozambique is seen as a country that could be doing much more," said Philip Muruthi, senior director of conservation science at the non-profit African Wildlife Foundation, which based in Kenya.
Mozambique’s elephant population has declined since the early 1970s by about half to 20,000, according to Muruthi. The Niassa reserve has about 12,000 elephants. Poachers have killed 500 elephants there so far this year and have wiped out Mozambique’s rhinos.
In the past week in Niassa, poachers killed an elephant with an assault rifle but fled without hacking off the tusks, apparently scared by rangers patrolling in a helicopter. Park scouts spent the night near the carcass and then removed its tusks in the morning so the poachers could not return for them.
Life Saving Treatment for Injured Elephants
On a single day this past week, we were able to provide urgent in the field veterinary treatment to four injured elephants, in four different locations. A significant achievement only made possible with DSWT’s helicopter, enabling a rapid response and providing the KWS Veterinarian’s working with us the ability to quickly and effectively dart the elephants from the air, before landing to carry out treatment.
Our veterinary projects, carried out with the Kenya Wildlife Service include on the ground Mobile Vet Teams and the Sky Vets Initiative.
From David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Facebook!
SAN ANTONIO — Lucky, the sole elephant remaining in the San Antonio Zoo, is anything but “lucky,” having been left in solitary confinement until the day she dies if Zoo Director Steve McCusker doesn’t have a change of heart.
The accrediting Association of Zoos and Aquariums recognizes that elephants are highly social animals and adopted a new policy requiring that all captive female elephants must be accompanied by at least two others, but this rule is not effective until 2016. Because of Lucky’s solitary confinement, the Tennessee Elephant Sanctuary volunteered to take Lucky in, free of charge.
In response to this generous offer, McCusker refused, explaining that he will not send Lucky because she is “weird” and “too old” and that relocating her might cause her harm. He said Lucky shows no interest in interacting with other elephants. He said that Lucky prefers the company of humans over other elephants, which runs contrary to what many elephant experts have stated about elephants.
They are highly social animals and family-oriented, much like humans.
One could argue that keeping Lucky in solitary confinement is a form of torture. By keeping Lucky alone, McCusker is keeping her from doing what is natural.
It’s no wonder that In Defense of Animals rates the San Antonio Zoo as the No. 1 worst zoo for elephants. Other elephants have died at the San Antonio Zoo, and Lucky shouldn’t have to face their same fate.
Queenie (Boo), Lucky’s last companion, passed away on March 10, 2013. The elephant who was with Lucky prior to Queenie’s arrival was Alport. After Alport died, Lucky was left alone for a while until Queenie arrived. After just 7 years, Queenie died, leaving Lucky once more alone.
Lucky may be acting “weird,” as McCusker said, out of grief and depression, things that elephants experience. Now, Lucky is alone once again.
As for the claim that Lucky, about 55, is simply “too old” to be moved, there is proof that this is also false. One elder elephant at the Tennessee Elephant Sanctuary was born in 1957 and has been there since 2006. This elephant, Liz, is now 57 years old, older than Lucky, and lives happily at the sanctuary.
At the elephant sanctuary, Lucky would have many friends of various ages. She would be able to move freely, bathe and swim as she pleases, eat as she pleases, and have a vast area to explore. A much better place than the barren cage she is kept in now. So, why have this poor elephant live out her last days in such solitude?
It is obviously not an economic issue. The sanctuary said it would take her free of charge.
It is also not a health issue. The zookeepers insist Lucky is perfectly healthy.
And it is not a problem of a lack of an elephant attraction at the zoo if Lucky were to leave. The zoo has stated that it already has three young African elephants ready for when Lucky dies.
There is no reason for such cruel treatment. San Antonio is a proud city but to be ranked at the top of the worst elephant zoo list, makes no one proud.
McCusker and the city of San Antonio should set Lucky free to the sanctuary, making her the “luckiest” elephant.
This isn’t fair.
So I just stumbled on this, and I’m absolutely appalled. How anyone condones this practice disgusts me. Do these people not notice the handy bullhook being used to torture this calf into performing these degrading tricks?
youresuchatwat, here’s something that might be of interest to you.
Yep, typical elephant post. Love that bitch who wants to know about the app. ”Uh cool animal abuse, but what app did you use?” It reminds me of that recent SeaWorld article where that guy was talking about how captive animals just get used for backgrounds in selfies. Like this photo from today, for instance:
People are just gagging for followers and likes and I don’t think they even see living beings anymore (which of course comes back around to the whole zoos/circuses don’t educate spiel that I won’t even get into because we all know it cold).
But as far as the tourist photos from SE Asia, I see about 3-4 of them in the tags a day on average. Including the post I reblogged this morning about that first temple elephant, these also cropped up just today:
And when people aren’t posting their own, they’re reblogging the same types of photos off WeHeartIt. These photos in particular get reposted all day long:
(a whole host of baby elephants on the beach, tbh. sometimes the hipster girl is riding them, etc.)
^ Nondescript Tumblr girls looooove that one.
It’s ridiculous how ingrained it seems to be that elephants are props. If only there were some widespread organization who kept small populations elephants locally for people to go and learn about their life histories and the devastating effects of this kind of captivity and tourism and why elephants deserve so much better than being treated like props or clowns…
(Oregon Zoo - OR)
(Smithsonian Zoo - DC)
(Knoxville Zoo - TN)
(African Lion Safari - Ontario)
(Rosamond Gifford Zoo - NY)
(Cincinnati Zoo - OH)
I visited the African Lion Safari many gears ago….when I was a kid. I don’t remember much of it, but I just lost all respect…
African Lion Safari is a complete shithole, especially for elephants. I witnessed them using bullhooks on the elephants, it is horrible for them they are treated like circus freaks and beaten. I saw on Google that it had like five star reviews I’m literally disgusted.
Smithsonian has since changed to Protected Contact I believe, so at least they’re done with the bullhooks but that doesn’t change the fact they once did use bullhooks, and most facilities still do and aren’t shy about it. The industry is so flawed and so many places are so against changing.
Oregon zoo is a REAL shithole! In 2000 a handler beat Rose-Tu with a bullhook so BAD she had 176 wounds. She was fucking FIVE and because she wouldn’t move on command she got the beating of a lifetime.
Plus they are directly connected to Have a Trunk who are fucking notorious for beating their animals with bullhooks and even stun guns! People don’t bother to look into this though, and so many zoos have major issues like this. Some are changing, some are trying to improve or phase out their programs but most are not or the “improving” ones are connected to the shitholes in one way or another.
So many animals are treated as cool accessories and the selfie with captive animal in the distance drives me nuts! Who care’s about the animal, where it came from, or how it’s handled, they’re just cool props for people to do with what they please, and they make awesome tourist photos! That’s all that matters apparently. Who gives a shit about the elephants? Why would I want to learn about elephants when I can watch them do unnatural and unsafe tricks??
Another species to be added to the ever-growing tick-list:
Africa’s Western Black Rhino has been officially declared EXTINCT. Poaching and lack of conservation have led the subspecies of black rhino to extermination, while the Northern White Rhino is ‘teetering on the brink of extinction’.
Way to go, humanity.
what’s sad is hardly anyone fucking cares or wants to hear about it let alone talk about it
Temple in Pondicherry (Puducherry) India. Got blessed by the elephant :)
No, you paid to get touched by a slave. Temple elephants work exceedingly long hours, chained onto hard surfaces which tear up their sensitive feet, crushed in throngs of loud tourists, get rented out to chaotic festivals and rarely get to live anything nearing a natural or sanity-sparing life. This is the kind of irresponsible tourist-centric animal abuse that needs to come to an end in Southeast Asia.
To that end, everybody needs to fucking educate themselves before they head overseas to get bilked by drunken louts for a photo op with their abused exotic animals. Don’t be this person, read before you go:
- Heart of Ganesh: Temple Elephants
- Elemotion: Temple Elephants
- Captive Blessings: The Plight of India’s Temple Elephants
- The Pain of Being a Temple Elephant
Please travel responsibly.