Shut down Surabaya Zoo
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Surabaya Zoo, also known as Kebun Binatang Surabaya (KBS), was founded in 1916 and is the one of the largest zoos in South East Asia, covering 37 acres and housing over 350 species. The zoo has fallen into disrepute however, with allegations of corruption, neglect, uncontrolled breeding and cruelty. It was dubbed "the zoo of death" after reports of at least 25 animals dying every month due to negligence and cruelty. These deaths included a giraffe who had swallowed a considerable amount of plastic, a tiger whose digestive track had decomposed due to be fed formaldehyde and the most recent case of a lion found hanging by its head from cage bars.
Many of the animals "cared for" at the zoo live in poor conditions, with little room to move and exercise as well as some species kept in the same cages as other, rival species (reports leaked of a cheetah, a gift from the south african president, that had it's leg bitten off by a malnourished tiger that they kept in the same environment died soon). Some of the animals are highly endangered species. The zoo states that there are 2,800 animals currently residing there, however separate reports give a number as high as 4,000. This inhumane treatment of animals must stop.
In 2010 the Forestry Ministry revoked Surabaya Zoo’s license after many animal deaths including rare species such as Sumatran tigers, Komodo Dragons, lions and crocodiles. East Java Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) conducted an investigation, which found that negligent keepers were to blame for most of the animal deaths. It is alleged that zookeepers are stealing meat which they sell to the black market. Also that animals are being stolen by the zookeepers and also sold.
Another factor for the current state of this zoo is the current budget of the zoo. The entry fee is less than $2.00 (US). This current cash flow is not nearly enough to properly breed, house and care for the animals that the facility hosts. As a result, the animals are often underfed and starving (video leaked of a thin sun bear with ribs visible standing on its hind legs begging tourists for food).
Due to the lack of training and care from the zoo keepers and officials, the facility is unable to separate breeding animals resulting in cramped spaces and filthy enclosures (roughly 200 pelicans inhabit a single cage the size of a basketball court, unable to stretch their wings, in another case a normally vividly coloured macaw had torn out all of its breast feathers due to the stress of living in a crowded environment).
While the zoo may look normal from the outside, behind the scenes tigers are kept locked in small concrete cells, only allowed out 3 days out of 10, crocodiles lie in a pool too small for them to move around, the water green with urine and muck. A baby elephant tugs at its chains as it moves around its enclosure, its mother is nowhere to be found. Little does the baby know is that his mother had died only a while ago, if you search it up, you can find the video of the adult elephant crying moments before its death. Upon closer examination it revealed bruises on the body of the animal.
While some of the animals are being relocated, they are also being abused, shouted at and beaten by the KBS staff members (several hippos were relocated, during the process they were physically beaten and injured)
Recently the zoo welcomed the birth of 11 komodo dragons, however we are sure that they will unfortunately meet the same fate as all the other inhabitants.
We call on the honourable President Joko Widodo to mandate the following 5 actions immediately:
1) Close Surabaya zoo permanently and dismiss the management. Hire reputable, qualified staff to engage in the immediate care of the animals.
2) Increase funding and security to ensure all animals receive the proper diet, and medical attention necessary.
3) For any animal where rehabilitation is feasible to the point where the animal could survive in the wild, rehabilitation must take place under the direction of qualified experts, so that they can be released back into the wild.
4) Any animals with incurable, degenerative conditions, and that are in significant pain must be humanely euthanized based on the recommendation of veterinary experts.
5) Commission an enquiry with the view to identify the causes of the conditions and the zoo, and the prosecution of those responsible for the state of the animals. Please act - the world is watching. Reference sites:
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