Animals Behind Bars For Human Entertainment!

Wild animals belong to the wild and they should live in their natural habitats. However regardless of the rights of the animals, it is a fact that most countries still have zoos where animals are being caged and held captive behind bars for mere human entertainment. Some studies related to the behavior of animals clearly state that ‘wild animals in zoos suffer physically and mentally as their complex social, behavioral and physical needs cannot be met in unnatural man-made environments’. Many animals in zoos show signs of ‘distress, such as pacing or rocking backwards and forwards repeatedly’, which according to the experts is an abnormal behaviour caused by the stresses of being held captive.

For many years, animal rights activists have been lobbying against the National Zoological Garden in Dehiwala and its lack of space for animals to live comfortably and many criticisms were directed at the zoo officials during the recent past for their lack of consideration of the well-being of the animals.

The Sunday Leader visited the zoo last Tuesday to see the current condition of the zoo and how the animals are being looked after. The Sunday Leader also spoke to several visitors to share their opinion about the condition of the animals and as to how they are being kept.

Speaking to The Sunday Leader, H.D.R.L Samaranayake, a person who was visiting the zoo with his family said that according to his observations the animals lack facilities to live comfortably in the zoo and the cages do not seem to be clean. “Especially when it comes to animals like lions and tigers, they look really lethargic and most of the big animals do not look as if they are being fed properly,” he said.

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