Animal Outcry.

As most of you know I rarely do mid-week posts unless something comes along that has me boiling. Well something has, and I am !

In February, Copenhagen Zoo caused an international outcry when they killed a healthy young giraffe called Marius. Citing the fact that it couldn’t go to another zoo because of inbreeding the staff then dissected Marius in front of a crowd and fed him to the lions. I don’t know whether there’s a perverted sense of justice about this but this week they killed 4 healthy lions. Two adults and their cubs.

With Marius I know that there were offers from other zoos to take him and surely they must have been aware of the gene pool so Marius would not have been a problem. In my eyes though Marius was a prime candidate for a return to the wild if the zoo were worried about interbreeding problems. The argument over the lions is different. The two older lions were put down because of what they call a generational shift ( meaning a new lion was now in charge?) and the two cubs put down because they were too young to fend for themselves.

Groups including the British-based Captive Animals Protection Society, Denmark’s own Organisation Against the Suffering of Animals, and Animal Rights Sweden all came out against Marius’ death this year. I don’t see that these groups would be so active if there weren’t a problem with the management with animals in zoos. In fact they must be extraordinarily busy since my reading tells me that European zoos alone kill 5000 healthy animals a year. And European zoos are meant to be the best at looking after their animals.

We take these animals from the wild, rear them, breed them and then kill them when it suits us. Its wrong!! I can see the argument for zoos as educational for children though I don’t care for them as a source of entertainment. None of these animals has the space of the wild nor the environment. Since there are many educational films now on every aspect of animals living in the wild, maybe it’s time zoos were closed down when their animals pass on naturally. I’d rather that than the slaughter of healthy animals.

People who agree that this killing is wrong can sign an appeal to Copenhagen Zoo to stop this killing. There are at the time of writing almost 40,000 signatures to present to them. Please let your name be one of them.

I also read an appeal today to Richard Branson. He is fully committed to the conservation of animals and has supported an end to the capture of whales and dolphins for aquaria. The problem is that the Virgin Company sell trips to SeaWorld where captive orcas entertain people daily. Most live until their twenties in captivity and yet in the wild a female can live into it’s eighties.  I’m going to borrow two other facts from the Care2 petition site as well.

  • Only 6 cents in every $100 of SeaWorld’s annual revenue goes towards conservation.
  • An orca at SeaWorld would have to swim around the main pool 1,400 times to match the distance travelled daily in the wild.

I find this kind of treatment sickening where animals are penned in spaces far too small for them. If you’d like to ask Sir Richard to stop doing trips to SeaWorld here’s the link to that petition.

There’s a petition to try and save the endangered water vole in the UK. I’m borrowing his information from the Care2 site

Have you ever seen a water vole paddling along our waterways? If so, you’re one of the lucky ones. Water voles are the UK’s fastest-declining wild mammal population and sightings of them are increasingly rare. If things continue this way, we’ll soon lose these captivating animals forever.

The good news is we can do something to save them.

The problem is simple: Water voles are losing their homes. The soft-soil banks where they build their burrows are eroding, leaving water voles with no safe place to shelter their young and hide from predators. As a result, they are quickly dying out.

Together, we can stop this from happening. With your help, we can recreate water voles’ lost habitats, converting eroded banks into lush areas of vegetation where they can safely feed and rear their young. Our initial efforts have already shown signs of success, but the process is taxing and we need as much public support as possible to expand.

And we must act quickly – the water voles don’t have much time.

The Water Vole.

The Water Vole.


As a final note, for my U.S. and Canadian friends. There are a lot of petitions on this site to try and save wolves which are yet again being hunted in some parts to extinction. Please remember, we took the wolves land not the other way round. They need to be protected to live in the wild and I’d ask if your State is one of those which is violating their protection and making wolf hunting legal, please find and sign the appropriate petition to let the State Legislature know that you don’t agree with their policy. If on the other hand you do agree with their policy then remember, yo’re the one who has to explain to your children why not only did you allow the species they’ll never see get wiped out but you actively helped.

Animals need our protection because in most cases they have no natural protection against the most lethal species on the planet- US.



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55 responses to “Animal Outcry.

  1. Reblogged this on Chris The Story Reading Ape's New (to me) Authors Blog and commented:
    Everyone knows MY stance on the mistreatment of animals – please read and support the issues and causes raised in this article by my friend Author Lord David Prosser.

  2. It is absolutely shocking! Animal Abuse makes me sick, thank you dear David for sharing with us!

  3. Thanks David. I’ll sign and share when I get home (from here I can only read and agree). When you talk about wolves (lobos in Spanish) you made me think of Félix Rodríguez de la Fuente, I guess our own David Attenborough. He worked very hard to protect Spanish wolves. I noticed there are some You-Tube videos and also images…

    • Thanks so much Olga.I cannot understand the pleasure some people get from hunting ‘los lobos’. Our own dogs are descended from these wonderful animals who kill to eat and not for pleasure as we do. They are loving animals and protective within the pack.
      Must w always take and never give back? Their hunting ranges are taken by us.and then we complain when they come on our property. They too have the right to survive.
      xxx Hugs Galore xxx

  4. You might note that the Black Rhino has officially been declared extinct now, and the lion, our wonderful iconic lion, is very close to being extinct. That is especially significant with the killings you mention. Returning them to the wild would work if they aren’t put in a reserve where a (rich) “hunter” pays to kill one, or a reserve where poaching is the cause of their disappearing. Our world will survive, but many of its current inhabitants are rapidly vanishing. We can’t survive without a balance ecosystem in place, but it’s being systematically destroyed. With the recent NASA prediction that we (western society) are now in the final phases of civilization collapse, too few realize the vital importance of what you speak, though it is only one of the issues that needs to be changed drastically if a remnant of mankind is to be prevented from being pushed back to hunter/gather survival. Is that why so many animal predators are being killed now, to eliminate future competition for food? Surly those in decision making positions aren’t known for such foresight. If they were we wouldn’t be in this predicament.

    • Everything you say is totally true Judith. These hunting reserves for the rich are obscene and not at all sporting.I’, begining to wonder if those in power have perhaps not got more foresight than we realise, it could be they’re preparing the world so that they and companies the size of Monsanto don’t own and control all the foodstuffs and we’ll get what we’re given. They will of course keep the troops onside and feed them and allow the competition to die off. They no doubt think the world ( Western) is already in decline far to much to make a recovery.
      I personally think we can recover if everyone is educated as to what will happen if we don’t improve, and those lessons must start in school. Conservation must be the key word.
      xxxx Huge Hugs xxx

  5. Reblogged this on An Author's View and commented:
    I can’t stand cruelty to animals, and will do all I can to raise awareness of the issues raised by David in this blog post.

    • Thank very much for the re-blog Alison. If your readers feel as you do then it won’t be long before the Director of this zoo is forced to resign and other zoos will note public feeling.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  6. That’s why I don’t go to zoos or circuses. I can’t stand seeing animals caged up or having whips cracked at them. I like to see them roaming free. I remember that story about Markus the giraffe. That was so sad. And now they’re doing it with the lions? That’s ridiculous.

    • They’ve already done it with the lions. Heaven knows what’s next. Like you I hate to see animals caged. I wouldn’t mind zoos like safari parks where there’s plenty of space for them carrying on for the sake of children who might never see the real thing but only if they look after the animals and don’t kill healthy ones for food. If they do, then it’s time we relied on documentaries to show us animals and teach us about them, but leave them where they belong.
      xxx Hugs xxx

  7. I typed Marius but auto-correct changed what I wrote. Great post, David.

  8. David, no wonder you were boiling. I was shocked and appalled. Yes, i’ve read that wolves that were once very scarce are now being seen in some southwestern states [USA], and i figured they’d soon be hunting them again… 😦
    Great-big hug to you,

    • I could almost have put the Zoo directors into a game reserve and let the animals deal with them.
      I was so shocked when I read that some states had issued licences to hunt Wolves again and even arranged special days for it and competitions as though it’s something to celebrate. It’s not like wolves can fight back. They will become extinct and someone will just say it’s the hunters fault when it’s the fault of the local legislature for not stopping it and coming down heavilly on anyone found breaking the law.
      I send you Massive Hugs Teagan xxxxxxx

  9. Heard about the lions – did they eat the giraffe? And if so, who’s going to eat the lions? Quite remarkable. Water voles are very special indeed.

    • No idea who they fed the lions to but it’s likely they’re the next on the list the way things are going. If lions are a threatened species I can’t understand why these lions weren’t introduced back into Africa, or if the zoos excuse that they were too old then maybe they could have sent the new hierarchy over and kept the old ones as a family unit.The killing seems senseless to me when there are alternatives.
      Thanks so much for the comment.

  10. I read the article about the lions – thank you for the link to the petition – I went off and signed it ASAP. That bloody zoo has no common sense or compassion. Sadly they aren’t alone. They might think their animals are commodities but I damn well don’t. It will be a cold day in hell before I set foot in another zoo. I know many do valuable conservation work and research, and it’s kind of great, hmmm, maybe, for kids to see the animals but I don’t need to. Some of them just make money.
    Wolves, voles, and so many other species have been endangered because of another species thoughtlessness, to say the least. We do know better, I’m not sure how much good changing now will do but rather than never might make a difference.

    • Thank you. It’s wonderful to know just how many people care about what’s happening. They are treating the animals as a commodity and without compassion, though I expect that’s the directors rather than the staff. Like you, I won’t set foot in a zoo again unless they can show they are a conservation zoo and re-home animals rather than kill healthy ones.
      I’m sure if we change things now there’s still a chance to turn things round a bit if not all the way. At least we might save some animals from extinction and some from being killed senselessly.
      xxx Huge Hugs to you xxx

  11. Hi David, I can remember seeing the report about Marius and it really made me cry and feel anger at the same time. I really can not believe how cruelty to animals still happens in today’s society. It really is shocking. Thank you for highlighting this problem and will signing the petition straight away and encouraging friends to do so as well.

    • Thanks so much Kim. This lack of humanity and foresight has already been responsible for the loss of some species. Lets hope we can light a fire under these people and let them see how many of us disapprove.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  12. Hi David.
    I cannot believe it happens!! It’s so ludicrous, how can they do that?? Signed and shared.

    As two very wise men said:
    “I have from an early age abjured the use of meat, and the time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men.”
    ― Leonardo da Vinci

    “Auschwitz begins wherever someone looks at a slaughterhouse and thinks: they’re only animals.”
    ― Theodor W. Adorno

    • Hello Renata. I wish I could answer your question but I cannot get my head round any of these reasons being valid. These are not pets, but they’ve been bred as needed so how can someone decide they’re no longer needed and kill them rather than rehome them? Animals that are endangered in the wild cannot be placed in Africa as a new pride? Ridiculous and inhuman.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  13. I know…that story disgusted and sickened me. I cannot stand to hear of awful treatment of animals and least of all it being done by entities that would seem to be in authority to protect animals. huge hugs, xxx Mousie and CJ xxx

    • Exactly so! These are people supposedly responsible for animal welfare and with an eye on conservation. The Director should not resign, he should be sacked and the zoo should be wound up slowly, with animals going elsewhere that can care for them or not being replaced as they die naturally. There was no valid excuse to kill Marius and there’s no valid reason to kill these lions which are endangered in the wild.
      xxx Hugs Galore to you both xxx.

  14. It’s appalling! I hope that international outrage will have its desired effect.
    xxx Hugs David xxx

  15. Thank you for sharing this information with us David.

    • Thank you for taking the time to look at it Mary J. I understand a first petition of 60,000 from people like us has already been sent to the Zoo and local authorities, with more to come. Lets hope it warms a few cold hearts and stops us hearing anything like this again.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  16. Thanks David! This disgusts me too and I’ve signed the petition. I’m also going to make sure never to go to another zoo or SeaWorld type thing (though I never really did anyway). It’s true that we’re the ones encroaching on them and not the other way around. Love and hugs!

    • Thanks so much Sheila, maybe we’ll hit them where it hurts now, in their wallets. Maybe they’ll remember they’re answerable to all of us for what they do to animals.We’re supposed to protect and conserve this world for others who come after us.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  17. This is awful, David. I had no idea zoos did things like this. Why do we humans believe we have the right to play god with the lives of the animals in our care? And even if there are compelling reasons for not letting some animals reproduce, surely it would not have been impossible to give a /male/ giraffe the snip!

    Signing the petition right now.

    • For some reason the petition site page wouldn’t load. Maybe it’s overloaded at the moment. Will try again later.

    • I agree. If you don’t want animals to breed- stop them. It’s much nicer thank killing healthy animals out of hand.
      It may be the people of Denmark are not as sentimental about animals as other countries and didn’t find chopping a healthy animal up to be fed to others as distasteful, but after Marius you’d have thought the Zoo would have got the message.
      When other zoos are prepared to take the animals it’s an option that should always be taken or release into the wild, especially with a threatened species. We do NOT have the right to play God with these lives.
      xxx Huge Hugs xxx

      • Sadly captive bred animals wouldn’t survive 2 minutes in the wild, but yes, I can’t believe there wasn’t a zoo somewhere that would have taken him. I suspect zoos are now run by bean counters too and killing Marius was just the cheapest option.

      • It’s possible that putting the lions in a place where there wasn’t another pride might have succeeded and with Marius, they can outrun most predators and he was young enough to adapt. And if not the wild then at least other zoos especially when places are offered.But I’m afraid you’re right, it’s the cheapest option and therefore the only one taken. Reminds me of the NHS where the bean counters choose that option over life too instead of giving certain cancer drugs.

        xxx Huge Hugs xxx

      • I think too many people have the idea ‘they’re just animals’, and hence expendable. My guess is humans are headed into the ‘just’ basket too.

      • Certainly the poorer ones are. Only those who have the wealth to hunt in the new game preserves will remain, plus their servants of course which includes everyone else.
        xxx Hugs Galore xxx

      • Isn’t it always the way? -hugs back-

  18. It’s incomprehensible to me why they allowed the original pregnancy to go ahead and produce a healthy giraffe that they seem to have been reluctant to keep or re-home with any of the Zoo’s that made the offers……it’s almost as if they wanted to stir up a very public and very contentious debate with this particular animal and now their lions. The Sea World controversy is very current here in Australia because Bindi Irwin announced recently some sort of partnership with them and Australia Zoo and it’s not going down very well with the public. In more positive news though Dr Jane Goodall is giving a series of talks about her life long devotion and research of Chimpanzees in May and June this year 🙂 Fantastic post David xx

    • Thanks so much. I can’t believe any Zoo would risk openly stirring up so much public emotion and condemnation on purpose. As you say, why let the breeding program and birth go ahead if all they’re going to do is kill the animals.
      As for Bindi Irwin, I’m hoping she’s not signed a deal to open a Sea World Centre as public opinion could go very much against her, especially now.
      I’m sure Dr. Jane Goodall will receive a fantastic reception in Australia and everyone will enjoy the talks.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  19. Thanks so much for posting this and providing the link. I have signed the petitions, Seems humanity’s biggest challenge is compassion for all living things, including the earth.
    Peace and love,

    • You’re right Jan. We don’t seem to have taught the last couple of generations much about selflessness and caring for the planet. They’re too bust thinking about themselves to concentrate of the generations still to come who may well have little left after we plunder and rape the planet and allow species to die off or be killed.
      I consider it sick that people can still pay to go on safari’s just to hunt.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  20. David, I remember reading about this–the outcry spanned the ocean–and when one network began to show ‘excerpts’ I thought that was equally appalling. The careless, cruel pregnancy planning in the first place, when they were only going to do this, makes me despair about our sick and thoughtless treatment of animals and, indirectly, what this says about our treatment of each other.

    • I agree Marylin. It’s a short step from the mistreatment of animals to the mistreatment of humans. Heads should roll over this episode and anything similar. We have to start teaching in schools about kindness to other species including ourselves and showing a zero tolerance of anything that approaches cruelty or bullying.
      xxx Stupendous Hugs xxx

  21. Excellent post David, I missed it because I was offline but read about it on your next post, if that makes sense.

    Just one, controversial comment. Everyone gets very het up about killing lions and giraffes. Or being fed horsemeat instead of beef. But no-one gets bothered about eating pigs, cattle, sheep etc. So some species become extinct or others are killed in zoos. Far more animals are killed for animal experimentation or for food. Where are the parameters? Why is it ok to kill a pig and not a lion? Seriously.

    • As always you raise a valid point. All I can say is that some animals are bred to be food and are not on the endangered list…a poor point I know but we still live in a society of meat eaters. As for other animals, I don’t eat donkeys but I rant when I see one being abused, or a horse being made to carry too big a load. I will rant at the mistreatment of any animal ( or person) I see or hear about.
      Why I was so furious with Copenhagen zoo is because lions are becoming an endangered species. They could have moved the new male lion out to another zoo rather than kill 4 lions which were healthy.. I was, and still am, angry that they killed the giraffe when it was healthy and other zoos had offered to take it. Why breed these animals at all if this is the route you’;re going to take. If zoos are about conservation of species then conserve.
      Pigs are bred to be food, lions are bred to display or to populate parts of the wild where they’re becoming rare. It may not be fair but my rant wasn’t about the killing of animals, it was about the needless killing of animals which I think those in the zoo were.
      xxx Sending Hugs xxx

      • I don’t disagree that the animals in the zoo were needlessly killed, I consider they were, not that I am a zoo fan anyway, although to the zoo staff, they would argue otherwise because they are working to a different set of rules and not an emotional reaction from the public which is basically what we saw after Marius and now with the lions.

        And I realise you weren’t talking about killing animals generally.

        I suppose I am playing devil’s advocate to some extent, but French and Swiss for example, eat horses, Chinese, Koreans and Swiss, and some South Americans eat dogs, the same with cats. Nearly 5 million horses are killed a year for food. People in the UK eat deer and rabbits and hare. Is the distinction that one shouldn’t kill an endangered species? Or one’s pet?

        People also eat lions apparently:

        and a little more objective;

        While we may live in a largely meat-eating society, or at least those who can afford it do, technically one could argue that the killing of animals for food is unnecessary. It also happens to be environmentally damaging, and growing crops to feed animals is one big waste of space for the amount of animal food returned compared with the crops grown.

        So from my perspective, I would say that killing animals for food is needless too. One comment on the first article I linked to mentioned that cows are extinct in the wild, I have no idea of the validity of that and am too lazy to check it out, it sounds reasonable. But it’s interesting say, to walk down the street in India and meet Holy Cows (somewhat skinny) who are revered and allowed to wander where they want because they are sacred and not eaten.

        It’s like the post I wrote about the Brit Princes going shooting in Spain and then publicising WWF in the next breath. It’s easy for me to criticise because it doesn’t take long to read my blogs and realise I don’t eat meat. Or wear leather. So hopefully no animal has died just to benefit my life. I think it’s harder when you do eat meat to draw a line. So you get the gradations from it is/isn’t ok to hunt big game (not just in Africa but in India and America too). It is/isn’t ok to hunt unendangered species for sport. And/or eat them. Factory farming is/isn’t acceptable. Animals should only be raised for food organically and grass-fed. Chickens (and their eggs) should be free-range etc etc.

        Technically, as it wasn’t an endangered species illegally shot, yes it is endangered but the killing wasn’t illegal, should those lions have been sold for food? Would people be happy with that?

      • I can’t argue with a thing you say. To just answer your last question though….. I doubt people would have been happier had the lions been sold for food.I know there’s a market for exotic foodstuffs today but these creatures were bred for display and since we’re led to believe that zoo animals are cared for, should they become surplus for some reason they should be offered to other zoos. Personally I’d like to have seen them put back in the wild in an area without other lions. Then I’d like to see zoos closed down one by one as animals die natural deaths and aren’t replaced so the animals grow up in the wild where best suited. There are plenty of Attenboroughs in the world to make videos that we can see on TV.
        xxx Huge Hugs xxx

      • I’m partly saying that we all want to justify our own actions and beliefs, and there is invariably a way to do it. So to go back to the zoo, the staff say – we killed Marius because … and we killed the lions because …..

        ‘Most’ people wouldn’t want them to be sold for food. It’s a bit like turning Marious into dinnertime for lions (ironic really). I did say I was playing devil’s advocate. My point isn’t that everyone is hypocritical although I think sometimes it’s borderline, it’s that we all have very different ethical standpoints.

        I certainly agree with the last part of your reply. I would close down zoos tomorrow, nasty cramped conditions, and yet when I wrote about Marius, or a follow-up post, a friend who worked in zoos for ages and has all the appropriate quals, said they had a role. He was also horrified about Marius so he wasn’t defending that. I wanted him to guest post, or at least write about it on his blog but he hasn’t done. I thought it would be good to get an authoritative perspective rather than an emotional one from Jo Public.

        I thought about going to swim with dolphins in NZ (beautiul animals eh?). Much as I would have loved that, I figured the nicest thing I could do for them was to leave them be. And that’s what we should be doing instead of studying them or killing them. What purpose does any of that serve?A little knowledge for people, a few bucks somewhere for someone, entertainment. It doesn’t solve world hunger, poverty, sex trafficking, decimation of the environment or discrimination, for example.

      • Yes, dolphins are beautiful. If they were in the sea I’m sure they’d have been glad to come and swim with you. They’re quite curious and very social. If they were in a marina I’d have perhaps had second thoughts.It’s known that the whales kept at SeaWorld in Florida die much earlier than the wild ones. It’s also known that they’d have to swim hundreds of times round their tank to equal the distance they’d cover in a day in the wild.Keeping animals like this for our pleasure is cruelty in the extreme.But, we are cruel and thoughtless as a race thinking our superiority gives us the right to do as we wish. Consideration isn’t even extended to our own kind since we seem happy to find any excuse to invade someone else’s country and kill the locals if there’s a sign of oil rights.
        You certainly did say you were playing devil’s advocate but in most of what you said I side with the devil anyway. You have a lovely way of getting to the point of an argument which I hope others take on board. You might convert a few yet.
        xxx I send Hugs aplenty xxx

      • I wish (I could influence how people behave).

        I would never visit a SeaWorld out of principle. There was a Sea Life thing started in Scarborough when I was working on the newspaper there. Luckily I never had to do any stories on it. My objectivity as a reporter may have gone on the line, but, it never happened.

        I think dolphins are wonderful and so intelligent – much more than us which isn’t saying a lot. Beauty, grace, and compassion. How much could we learn from them?

        I will now go away and shut up as I have said more than enough on your thread and no doubt contributed to your email backlog and will be mentioned in depatches next Sunday as a PITA!

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