Monday, 19 August 2013

Namibia to export elephants, rhinos, lions, leopards and cheetah amongst many others to a Cuban zoo

Why take animals from the wild?
August 2013. Some 150 animals, including elephant, large carnivores, small predators, antelope and vultures will form part of a huge consignment of wildlife being donated to the Cuban government as part of an agreement between the two countries. The South Africa National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) has expressed its disgust at the Namibian government's decision to capture animals from the wild for transportation to Cuba.

This action will be particularly distressing for animals that live in close knot families, especially elephants, whose family ties can be very close. Wildlife Extra questions why, when there are surplus zoo animals all over the world, so many need to be removed from the wild for this venture?

Plans are to relocate the first animals to Cuba by air by October 2012
The NSPCA expresses concern that these wild-caught animals are to endure a long and stressful flight to their new destination and also raises questions as to whether or not any animal welfare organisation has checked the facilities and standards of care at their end destination. It is understood that the animals will be kept in a national zoo-type park, where some animals will be semi-free but still confined.

It is saddening to note that these animals will be taken out of their natural habitats and sent to a strange land where they will be deprived of freedom and be totally dependent on humans for their daily needs. Considering the inhumane culling of seals taking place in Namibia at the moment and the world-wide outcry, this latest action by the Namibian government and its Ministry of Environment and Tourism raises serious concerns regarding this country's stance on animal welfare. Perhaps something for animal lovers to consider when considering Namibia as a holiday destination.

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