Animal welfare improves in Swiss zoos
Swiss zoos continue to make progress in animal care, according to Swiss Animal Protection (SAP). But while some are seen as exemplary, others need to improve their game.
This content was published on April 29, 2021 – 18:28
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For example, the way Californian sea lions are kept at Basel Zoo seems “like a relic of the past,” said the organization, which has rated 42 Swiss zoos and animal parks for its Zoo Report 2020, published Thursday.
The problem in Basel is that the zoo is in the middle of the city and therefore cannot be expanded, SAP said. He welcomed the fact that some species had been abandoned to make more room for others “but a further reduction in diversity would be welcome”.
However, with its breeding successes and many “excellent” new enclosures, the Zolli, as the Basel Zoo is called, remains one of the most important zoos in Switzerland.
Samuel Furrer, zoologist at SAP, also praised the Masoala rainforest at Zurich Zoo. He said it was one of the “best zoo facilities in the world,” providing the animals with many stimuli that encourage their natural behavior.
“Pens with such characteristics are important for favorable conditions for the animals. Zurich Zoo is a model in this regard, ”he said.
On the other hand, the authors of the report criticized the Marécottes wild boar enclosure in the canton of Valais and the Seeteufel animal and adventure park in Studen, in the canton of Bern, which exhibits caimans and turtles on bare concrete.
But the authors were overwhelmingly positive. They noted that since the last report, published in 2014, Swiss zoos have more space for animals, more well-structured enclosures and a growing awareness of animal welfare concerns.
“The results of modern zoo biology and the pressure from animal welfare and critical zoo visitors have contributed to the fact that the quality of husbandry today is clearly at a higher level than it is. was 20 years ago. The days when wild animals were presented to astonished public as exhibits should definitely be over.
They highlighted the Hasel zoo in the canton of Aargau, which is home to “one of the best raccoon enclosures in Switzerland”, and the Juraparc in the canton of Vaud for people wishing to observe brown bears and Wolves.
The otter enclosure at the Dählhölzli zoo in Bern, the large aviary for alpine ibex, vultures, bald ibex and alpine marmots in the La Garenne animal park in Vaud and the flamingo enclosure at the Walter zoo in the canton of St. Gall were also praised.