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South Lakes Safari Zoo looses licence extension.

(34 Posts)
POGS Mon 06-Mar-17 16:24:17

I had never heard of South Lakes Safari Zoo until I read about it in the Daily Mail but after seeing the photos and understand the dire conditions , animal cruelty the poor animals suffered I was pleased to hear today the Council has refused to extend the Zoos Licence.

I can't get my head around the fact things obviously were allowed to carry on for so long, surely to goodness there was so much obvious knowledge regarding the conditions somebody must have reported / noticed what was going on.

How sad.

rosesarered Mon 06-Mar-17 17:42:31

Yes, it is sad, and hope they relocate the animals to a better zoo.
Time to consider if it is fair to keep some kinds of large animals in a zoo at all.
I understand that for some animals, on the endangered list, a breeding programme can be a good thing ( tigers) but they must have a good environment to live in.

Smileless2012 Mon 06-Mar-17 17:51:42

Are the owners going to be prosecuted? They should be and have a lifetime ban from keeping animals of any kind, in fact they should be locked up for allowing and causing so much suffering.

sue1169 Mon 06-Mar-17 18:24:47

YES..should really have been a conviction..tragic cruelty...horrendously sad....

nina1959 Mon 06-Mar-17 18:35:08

I'm from that area. It's been going quite some time but things really hit the headlines a few years ago when a young female keeper was killed by a tiger, faulty lock on the door I think.
I think zoo's really should only exist for the longevity and the protection of the species not people's entertainment. I feel the same about circuses.

SueDonim Mon 06-Mar-17 18:51:08

We visited the zoo in 2000 and it seemed fine then, quite forward-thinking, in fact, so I have been shocked to read of what's been happening lately. It sounds as though management has been overwhelmed and things have been let go badly. sad

Elegran Mon 06-Mar-17 19:42:52

nina Most zoos now agree with you - that zoos are not there primarily to entertain people. Their "mission statement" usually contains something about education about the natural worls, spreading the word about the importance of conservation, protecting threatened habitats and encouraging the breeding of endangered species. The profits from many zoos go

The trouble is, they can't send money to support projects unless they earn some, and the only source of that is the visitors who come to see the animals.

Elegran Mon 06-Mar-17 19:46:33

Don't know what happened there! The sentence that was chopped in half should have read "The profits from many zoos go straight to support conservation projects, in this country and overseas"

And "natural worls" should have been "natural world"

Deedaa Mon 06-Mar-17 21:14:49

I made the mistake of reading the list of how the animals had died. It's the sort of thing you can't unread! How they had the nerve to try and renew the licence I don't know.

gillybob Mon 06-Mar-17 21:34:15

I have visited South Lakes safari park with my DGC on many occasions in fact I think we have visited almost every year (except for a time when it was closed for some refurbishment). We always commented on how good the animal pens looked and that they were nice and large and natural looking. I really can't believe things have got so bad and the cynical side of me wonders if the land is earmarked for something else hmm I have decided not to read the full case as I might find it upsetting reading . The zoo was very reasonably priced to get into, so they couldn't have made much money and they did carry out a huge refurbishment recently. My DGC love animals and especially loved hand feeding the giraffes. We were planning a (long promised) visit to Edinburgh zoo this year. I am not sure I want to visit any zoo again .

mumofmadboys Mon 06-Mar-17 21:56:27

We have also been there a number of times. Last time was probably 5-6 years ago. Appeared fine to us.

Scooter58 Mon 06-Mar-17 22:21:05

Have also visited this park and we all really enjoyed our day,was 3 years ago and at that time all appeared fine.

jusnoneed Mon 06-Mar-17 22:23:43

Watching the news tonight, if the pictures they showed of a lion and a tiger in muddy, tatty wire fenced enclosures is how the place is I am amazed it has been allowed to be open. It looked awful.

gillybob Mon 06-Mar-17 22:26:47

It certainly wasn't like that last year when we visited jusnoneed quite the contrary in fact. All the animals looked like they had loads of space and good enclosures which were certainly not tatty or muddy either. Surely things couldn't have got so bad so quickly?

Hopehope Tue 07-Mar-17 00:00:57

I don't think IK can stand to read the full thing either to be honest. I know that is very weak of ne, but I have enough things to upset me without looking for more. That does not mean I don't care. I care a great deal. Of course I went to the Zoo as a child, My Parents thought it a good day out. As soon as I could think for myself I hated Zoos and all that they stand for. I truly do not believe that they do alot of good conservation wise, it is all about making money, and I would doubt what Elegran says about the money being spent on conservation projects.
I don't mean that I doubt Elegran, obviously she has found a link, but I don't believe the infornation. Oh dear I won't sleep now thinking about all this neglect and cruelty.

Hopehope Tue 07-Mar-17 00:01:29

IK should have said I !!

BlueBelle Tue 07-Mar-17 05:06:09

I don't know the zoo myself , I don't agree with zoos BUT if Gillybob visited last year and it was good with plenty of animal space can it have got this bad so quickly how can space decrease in such a short space of time
Aren't zoos visited at least annually by RSPCA or equivalent if so many animals have died over the last four years why has it taken so long to raise questions

nina1959 Tue 07-Mar-17 08:53:49

According to a past employee, health and safety both created and exacerbated many of the problems. I wonder what will become of the animals?

Jalima Tue 07-Mar-17 10:04:58

I wondered, too, about the RSPCA and if they had been involved at all; some of the pictures looked truly shocking.
I have heard that the RSPCA is more keen on a political agenda and is very quick to put animals down than try to save and re-home them though.

Yes, animal conservation is a large part of the agenda of some zoos.

Jalima Tue 07-Mar-17 10:10:14

Hopehope you could be right and the public is being sold a myth:

gillybob Tue 07-Mar-17 10:35:58

Of course non of us can really know what goes on behind the scenes or after a zoo or safari park has closed for the night. I am not sure about the RSPCA either Jalima. I have decided not to read the report and prefer to stay in a blissful world of pure ignorance as I have got enough to lose sleep over at the minute.

Elegran Tue 07-Mar-17 10:41:39

Hopehope Jalima I was NOT quoting a link, but the account sheet of my own local (Edinburgh) Zoo, and I know that other big-name zoos also support conservation and education. They work hard to increase knowledge of how animals SHOULD be kept. That is not just ion zoos, but in places where there is ignorance about native animals, and conflict between them and the people who live and work near them.
Do look at this link -
Gilly Please don't cancel your visit because of this tragedy - and let me know when you will be in Edinburgh!

Was that South Lakes Safari Zoo a member of BIAZA - the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquaria? Most of the reputable zoos in this country belong to that, and if they don't then they are working towards raising their standards until they can be admitted. Before visiting any establishment which keeps animals you should check this.

There is also a European Association and a World Association (and probably a lot more) Some countries are not very good at animal husbandry and need reminders. In general, this country is far better than it was a generation ago. News items likme this are the exception rather than the rule.

Elegran Tue 07-Mar-17 10:59:40

It may not have been space decreasing, but popuilation increasing.

When you visit a zoo, what is it that you most want to see? Cute babies! A zoo or safari park without babies is a sterile environment for beasts and visitors alike. The ethos these days is to make sure that the animals live as close as possible as they would in the wild, which includes mating and producing young, but that needs to be controlled.

Cuddly creatures are very nice for all, but babies have a habit of growing up, and what do you do with them then?
Keep them? you'll need more space, and you'll need to keep them away from their parents if they are likely to have fights, or breed incestuously.
Send them to another establishment? If it is a rare and attractive specimen, they will be grateful, but not if it is yet another of something they already have enough of.
Euthanase them? Only if you want to be on the front page of the daily papers.
Feed them to the lions and tigers? Imagine the headlines!!!

One of the funcions of BIAZA and the other associations is to be a kind of dating agency for zoo animals. They keep studbooks with the ancestry etc of all the animals in collections, and advise on which should be allowed to breed, and with which mate. This prevents close interbreeding, and warns if one species is becomeing over-represented so breeding should be completely stopped for a while. They also oversee the movement of animals from one zoo to another, as well as their husbandry.

So pleas support zoos and wildlife parks which are members of BIAZA, and boycott ones which are not.

Jalima Tue 07-Mar-17 15:21:54

Thanks Elegran
I must confess I didn't read your link before I posted a reply to Hopehope as I was rushing out

Jalima Tue 07-Mar-17 15:23:02

sorry, not a link, your post.