Animals Behind Bars The Truth About Zoos and Their Effects on Animals BY Kaylay Giordanella Amanda Rimpici Leila Shevins
What is a Zoo? The first official Zoo appeared in 1828 for scientific study and was known as the London Zoological Gardens. In 1847 was opened for the public. By definition, a Zoo is a place where wild animals are kept for exhibition by the public. They can be used for educational purposes or just plain entertainment.
Upon further inspection, Zoos can be looked at as prisons, trapping animals in unnatural habitats with taunting onlookers. Zoos do more harm than good, and although we cannot stop the zoo phenomena, our Non-profit Organization, Animals Behind Bars, can help it from getting worse.
THE PROBLEM Zoos are breeding grounds for disaster. -They cut the life spans of animals -Cause psychological problems -Cause health related problems and lack of genetic diversity -Captive bred animals can spread diseases in the wild -Appalling conditions can be found in Zoo habitats -Limit how the animal would naturally perform in the wild
Why do these problems occur?
Premature Death In a Times article titled Free Dumbo! Zoos Are Bad for Elephants, a survey of 4,500 captive elephants took place worldwide. “A team of researchers from the U.K., Canada and Kenya found that once you lock up the giant, space-loving beast, their health suffers, their median life span plummets, and they quit breeding – the last thing you would want for a creature you’re ostensible trying to help survive” stated the article. LIFE SPAN OF AFRICAN ELEPHANTS IN CAPTIVITY Zoo-born females live a median of 16.9 years LIFE SPAN OF ASIAN ELEPHANTS IN CAPTIVITY 18.9 years
LIFE SPAN OF AFRICAN ELEPHANTS IN WILD 56 years LIFE SPAN OF ASAIN ELEPHANTS IN WILD 41.7 years
Zoochosis •Zoochosis is the term coined for when an animal becomes deeply depressed, even psychotic, as the result of captivity. •Zoochosis resulted from putting animals in captivity, as it is derived from the word zoo and psychosis, meaning a loss of contact with reality, which usually includes delusions and hallucinations. •Zoochosis occurs because animals are not used to being in captivity as they belong in the wild. Being caged in causes them to go insane.
Stereotyped Symptoms of Zoochosis • • • • • • • • • • •
Bar biting Tongue playing Pacing Circling Neck twisting Vomiting Coprophagia Rocking Swaying Head bobbing and weaving Self mutilation
Health Problems Elephants exhibit obesity and Cardiovascular disease, which is the result of taking in too many calories and not exercising. Also killing captive Asian Elephants is a form a fatal herpes. Often infected with a form of Herpes Virus are the African Elephants, and it causes them no discomfort and little illness. However, when brought together in captivity, the virus jumps to Asain elephants and mutates into a lethal form, something Zoos have accidently created. Zebras at the National Zoo in Washington D.C starved to Death because of insufficient or incorrect food, while a panda at the same zoo died from ingesting rat poisoning. GENETIC DIVERSITY If zoo keepers do not take special care in making sure animals do not inbred with eachother, mutations occur. In the UK captive bred Snow Leopards were born with congenital deformities.
Spread of Disease •Captive bred animals can pose a threat to wild populations by carrying diseases. •Black Rhino contracted Haemolytic Anaemia, the body’s immune system attacks its own red blood cells •Arabian Oryx can carry TB, Tuberculosis.
•Animals in zoos, such as Antelope, Osterich, and Big Cats in this country and abroad, were found to have a form of BSE, commonly known as Mad-Cow disease. •Black Footed Ferrets were found to have Canine Distemper, contagious, incurable, often fatal, multisystemic viral disease that affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal, and central nervous systems. •In 1997 an Elephant died from Enteritis, an inflammation of the small intestine, caused by Salmonella.
Horrible Habitats Habitats in zoos are often too small to accommodate the animals within them, or do not emulate the animals natural environment.
Animals like Zebra, Gazelle, Elephants and Giraffes run across miles of open terrain, and in captivity, it’s impossible to do so.
Limits Wild Side • In Zoos, animals cannot be themselves. The constant stress, and lack of privacy enable them to engage in natural hunting and mating activities.
What Happens to (some) Animals in Zoos End up in circuses Sold to exotic meat industry Used for experiments Surplus is destroyed or sold
Predictions and the Past -Because of Zoochosis, animals will harm themselves, other animals, and humans EX. Woman mauled by her pet monkey in 2009. -Living Conditions and abuse will continue to get worse, diversity will decrease, premature deaths will increase, and signs of Zoochosis will spread.
Symbiotic Relationships and Biotic Factors Abiotic Factors
•Animals Habitat •The weather affecting the habit within the zoo
•The animals living in the zoo •Other living organisms in a habitat
Relationships •Certain birds and mammals live together in habitats, creating a symbiotic relationship •Commensalism- Pond of fish and tiger live together in the same habitat-> tiger eats fish, tiger benefits.
Pt 1 -> Zoos Don’t Need Zoochosis Part one of our plan to stop the conditions of zoos from getting worse is to help animals with Zoochosis. By giving animals productive ways to spend their time, healthy living conditions, and sufficient privacy, we can eliminate Zoochosis and mental deterioration. This can be done by providing toys for animals and engaging them in activities they would do in the wild.
Pt 2 -> Helping the Habitats In order for animals to feel more at home, they need to have habitats very close to their natural environments. This means swapping out chains for trees, and crystal clear water for a more realistic H2O. If habitats are beyond repair or cannot be enlarged, then Zoos, with our aid, will need to find reputable homes for those animals. In all honesty, finding new homes for animals will be the toughest part of our plan.
Milestones • Zoos all over the USA begin to change unhealthy living conditions • Abuse subsides and abusers are arrested • Safety hazards for both humans and animals are fixed • A person or team is assigned a zoo or set of zoos to look after. They will check for signs of Zoochosis in animals, help animals already with Zoochosis, and come up with plans to stop abuse and Zoochosis, and fix habitats in those particular zoos.
Cost and Maintenance • Cost – Relying on Government Grants, private foundations and corporations, and careful investing, the money we receive is used to build and rebuild better zoos.
• Maintenance --The groups established at zoos will maintain the condition of the zoos, as well as zoo keepers and other zoo workers.