‘The wild is no longer a safe place for an­i­mals’

7 Days in Dubai - - DEAR 7DAYS -

In re­sponse to the com­ments to the let­ter prais­ing the new sa­fari park, in par­tic­u­lar the com­ment say­ing an­i­mals should be in the wild, you are right Mar­cus, we should leave the an­i­mals in the wild where they be­long. Oh wait a minute! The wild is no longer safe be­cause of peo­ple that want more land or want an­i­mal parts or want to take an­i­mals from the wild and keep as pets. And be­fore you say isn’t that what zoos do, first check your facts, eth­i­cal zoos don’t take from the wild. Maybe when the last an­i­mals are ex­tinct you will be one of the peo­ple that cry out “why didn’t we do some­thing to help keep the species alive”. The sad fact is that many species on this planet will in time dis­ap­pear be­cause of greed and stu­pid­ity. Good eth­i­cal zoos and sa­fari parks may be the last hope that many an­i­mals have for sur­vival. And if peo­ple pay money to see them then isn’t that a good idea? Or will you Mar­cus be will­ing to do­nate say 10 per cent of your in­come to the run­ning of such places? A few facts that you haven’t thought of: 1. places like zoos and sa­fari parks can’t run on well wishes; 2. Sav­ing wildlife and ed­u­cat­ing peo­ple so they can ap­pre­ci­ate an­i­mals is not ex­ploit­ing an­i­mals, us­ing them as props for self­ies is, or mak­ing them do un­nat­u­ral tricks to en­ter­tain peo­ple is. But giv­ing them a safe home and keep­ing the species alive isn’t ex­ploit­ing; 3. If a government is pre­pared to pay for and fund an eth­i­cal park then it should be given a pat on the back. Be­cause it shows that it un­der­stands that it has a role to play in con­ser­va­tion; 4. No zoo or sa­fari park makes a profit. The money al­ways goes back into the park to pay for ex­pe­ri­enced peo­ple to care for the an­i­mals, re­search, for education and to make the park bet­ter by up­grad­ing ex­hibits. 5. While it would be nice to live in a world where wildlife would be safe and all we had to do was send money to pro­tect them, that isn’t the real world. Mis­in­formed peo­ple like your­self that will al­ways try to find the neg­a­tive in every­thing.

Ben Dubai

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