Heaven and hell are always mentioned in religions. Most people havegeneral ideas that heaven is a place where has many kind angelsdefending evils and full of happiness. On the opposite side, the hellis a place where has many dirty evils doing bad things and full ofsadness. Theoretically, it is impossible to find a place that cancombine heaven and hell. Establishing zoos is among the mosteffective ways of preserving and conserving the endangered speciesbecause wildlife, unlike human beings, needs the help of specialagencies and individuals to protect them from extinction. With theincreased number of endangered species, the zoo becomes more and moreimportant. The zoo plays a role as an angel to help animals defendpoachers and provides the habitat for animals however, once inside,I realized that not only is zoo a heaven, but also it is a hell. Mostpeople think the zoo has many good functions like a heaven.Oppositely, a lot of individuals point out that the zoo has such badeffects and look like a hell. In this paper, I will discuss the bothsides of opinion and give my personal suggestion how to fix thisissue.
First, zoos provide animals with safe habitats where they can survivewithout the danger of predators and human enemies. The zoos try toprovide the right environment for all the species depending on theirhabits. Although they live in restricted places, the zookeepersprovide them with the appropriate food and cages (West 3). Almost allthe animals introduced into the zoos get along with the newenvironment and they only take a short period to cope with theartificial environment. If this environmental not suitable for theanimals, there could be documented accounts of the animals trying tobreak free or dying, and this would have beaten the logic behindsaving their lives from other causes of death.
Secondly, zoos are safe havens for animals since the preservationistkeep them away from illegal poachers (West 4). Most of the endangeredspecies are in danger of extinction due to massive hunting for theirexpensive body parts. Unlike in the traditional set up when peoplehunted animals for food, today people use modern equipment like highcaliber guns to shoot down animals. In a day, they can kill severalanimals and they, therefore, live in danger. The activists groupcapture the remaining animals and restrict them in zoos wherepoachers cannot access them some animals like California Condors, redwolves, among others were on the brink of extension in the lastdecade due to massive hunting for their skins. Through the efforts ofzoo keepers, the few remaining animals are safe and people can viewthem (Torres). Although their numbers are small, they can only phaseout naturally. The keepers can also control their breeding toincrease them in number in the safe havens.
Also, zoos offer employment to different categories of people bothyard hands and scientists. They make a living from the services theyoffer. Researchers get a chance to study animals closely and improvethe conditions of the new habitats by monitoring their behavior(Torres). The semi-skilled workers feed the animals and keep thecages clean. They, therefore, make a livelihood from theestablishment o the zoos.
On the other hand, zoos come with various restrictions to theanimals’ freedom and mobility. Animals stay in cages, and theycannot move about as they used to in their natural habitats. Most ofthe animals in danger of extinction are highly mobile, and they canroam tens of kilometers every day. However, after being kept in thepreservation facilities, they only have a few meters of space, andthis restricts their movement. It is more of moving into a prisonafter being free to roam the forests. Also, some animals do not havethe privilege of enjoying the company members from their species dueto a forced separation they cannot also look for mates.
Another factor that makes zoos inappropriate for animals is that itcontributes to the loss of animal’s natural abilities. In theirnatural habitats, animals consume food acquired through their innatemeans, and they roam freely without many artificial restrictions.However, when caged in the zoos, they mostly feed on domestic foodand their movement does not extend beyond their cages. Also, theyinteract with human beings, and this is unnatural in their originalhabitats. It is no wonder to see people entering the cages freely tohave photographs holding the animals or playing with them. It is anindication that their natural abilities are suppressed, and theybehave just like domestic animals. Other animals become subject tohuman enforced lessons like playing with balls to entertain thevisitors. The idea of approaching a red fox in the wilderness andgetting close for a photograph is not conceivable in their naturalhabitats.
Also, many zoos have become business ventures whereby people pay tosee the animals and take photographs. With the increased extinctionof some animals, the remaining species can only be found in protectedareas. People from different regions throng into the zoo to see theanimals and take photographs. Some activists take the advantage ofpeople`s curiosity to charge high fees in the name of contributingtowards the conservation of the different animals while in realitythey are after profits (Dawkins 21).
Although zoos play a crucial role in ensuring that some animals donot become extinct indefinitely, they sometimes go over theirmandate. For this reason, several changes need to be implemented tostreamline the genuine conservation efforts. First, saving animalsfrom extinction does not necessary mean putting them in cages. Theactivists can look for vast protected areas and provide security forthe animals while they are still in the wilderness environment(Dawkins 36). This will help o preserve their natural abilities.Also, there should be a significant level o control on the activists’efforts so that they do not exploit visitors and donors in the nameof contributing towards keeping the animals safe. When it becomes aprofit venture, the interests of the animals are likely to beoverlooked since the activists will be looking forward, t fulfill thedesires of the visitors.
In conclusion, zoos are important in the protecting animals from theheightened manmade dangers in their natural habitats. They keepillegal poachers away, and they provide animals with safe havenswhere people can view them. However, they restrict the animals incages, and this interferes with their natural abilities. Someactivists use the opportunity to solicit funds from visitors anddonors, and they reduce the conservation effort into a profit-makingventure. However, establishing a considerable level of control curbssuch motives. Animals should also be allowed to stay in environmentsthat reflect the features of their natural habitats so that they donot lose their innate characteristics.
Dawkins, Marian.Animal suffering: the science of animal welfare. New York:Springer Science & Business Media, 2012.Print.
Torres, Phil.Zoos are Endangered Animals’ Best Hope for Survival. AljazeeraAmerica, 2015. Web.
West, Chris."Introduction: is there a conservation role for zoos in anatural world under fire?." Catalysts for conservation: adirection for zoos in the 21st Century, London, UK, 19-20 February,2004.. Cambridge University Press, 2007.