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No place on earth for Marius - Execution of healthy young giraffe in Copenhagen Zoo 2014

The news that the Copenhagen Zoo has carried out the execution of the resident young male giraffe, and cut his body up in front of onlookers, feeding him to the resident lions also in front of a young audience is macabre, insensitive and devoid of judgment and empathy...

We all know that lions eat meat and that in the wild they hunt and eat giraffes. In captivity, lions must be fed meat but it is a very far cry from feeding a captive animal “meat’ to feeding it the identifiable body parts of a named personality in the zoo , one who has died at the hands of the zoo authorizes for no crime whatsoever but for the very dubious reason that it’s genes were too like those of the other giraffes in the zoo.

We are supposed to think that this is OK! It is not OK ! Apart from being a crime against the animal who was in the care of the Copenhagen Zoo, to deliberately show the feeding of Marius to the lions to children is try to desensitize them to what was really a ruthless killing and amounts to a sort of pornography.

We all need to come to terms with our own omnivore /carnivore natures in the industrialized urban society many of us live in, divorced from nature but to commit this act, to show it to children and to expect them to understand is for want of a better word – sick.

I know a child can take in that a farm animal becomes meat on the table, but this incident in Copenhagen is ... gratuitous flaunting of the horror of zoo life. Are the children supposed to mull this over and conclude that it is OK because the respected zoo did it? It’s not OK! I wonder if Princess Mary's children were treated to this display.
In a way, for utter disregard of other creatures this possibly even beats the systemic mismanagement, cruelty and neglect of animals in the Surabaya Zoo. (Indonesia)

This planned and premeditated exercise in Copenhagen was carried with chilling efficiency and horrifies me as much as Surabaya Zoo's apparent careless neglect.

As with any such story, the killing of Marius the giraffe is ten times as distressing on knowing that it is common practice to kill healthy animals in zoos if the genes match too well.

I wonder what an interplanetary visitor would make of this killing. The ratio of giraffes to humans is – maybe 10,000 giraffes- depending on which article you read – max 100,000, and there are 7,143, 000,000 humans ( and rising rapidly ) This looks like a ratio of 71,430:1 at best.

But there was no place in the world for Marius the giraffe …

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Comments

Marius the giraffe was considered to be of little value due to his "common genes" and thus not suitable for breeding! Surely these zoo keepers can look beyond the animals in their charge as being more than a handful of genes?
The zoo ignored a petition signed by thousands and offers from other zoos and a private individuals to save the animal. They were intent on his destruction, in a cold and clinical fashion.
Visitors, including children, were invited to watch while the giraffe was then skinned and fed to the lions. This is far from a dignified end for one of the world's most fascinating and unique animals!
The European Association of Zoos and Aquaria to put down Marius by because there already were a lot of giraffes with similar genes in the organisation's breeding program. The giraffe didn't have to "breed"! What about their intrinsic value and an individual animal that deserved to live?
Copenhagen Zoo has lost their vision if they think that zoos exist for artificial breeding purposes and for human entertainment. Instead of "conserving global biodiversity and achieving the highest standards of care and breeding for animals", they have become a commercial organisation with the callous and anthropocentric view that genes can be unethically manipulated for convenience, even at the expense of killing healthy animals!
It's a Nazi-like program to exterminate the "undesirable", the common genes no matter how healthy, and propagate the genes they unwarrantably think are more "worthy"!

Copenhagen Zoo recently killed 4 healthy lions in its "care". I wonder if they are ones who ate Marius, the giraffe. I think management has lost sight of the present and what it has (a bird in the hand) for some future genetic ideal breeding combination. (2 in the bush) and that's putting it kindly.

The lions were killed to make way for a new pride after the zoo received a another male, and to avoid the risk of inbreeding, according to a statement on the zoo's website. Instead of respecting animals as sentient beings, with rights to exist and survive, they are being treated as breeding objects, and warehoused until their usefulness as genetic stores - and then cruelly dispose of them!

The four lions were put down on Monday after the zoo failed to find a new home for them, a spokesman said. All four were from the same family.

They don't have to "breed" to be of use. The four lions that were killed the same day the new lion arrived (for a seamless transition period) included a 16-year-old male and a 14-year-old female in addition to their two young cubs. The cubs were killed because they were too young to fend for themselves.

This zoo has become a clinic, breeding factory, rather than a safe place to protect threatened species. They have lost their vision, and are banking on genetics and not the welfare of animals.

I remember having a picture book when I was a child called "The Animals that live in the zoo" with a different animal represented on each page. Since the Copenhagen Zoo was happy to have children witness the carving up of Marius, the giraffe to feed to the lions, maybe they could fund -raise with a nice children's book called "The Animals that die in the zoo". They could have different dispatched animals on each page. They could say on page 1 "Monday- One beautiful giraffe was killed to make way for other giraffes who would make better mummies and daddies for baby giraffes. Learn about why when you are older." On another page they could have for example "On Wednesday, this cuddly family of lions with cubs went to sleep forever to make way for different lions who the Zoo thought would make a better lion family. In between Monday and Wednesday we don't know which animals at the zoo were killed but you can be sure that it was nothing to make you sad because the zoo replaced all the animals with better ones. You can't see why they are better but please believe the zoo that they are. Saying goodbye to perfectly healthy and maybe even happy animals is quite OK as long as it is all for the best. Don't worry, children that you will not be able to see the same animals when you go back to the zoo next time because they will look the same to you as the ones you saw last time."
The Copenhagen Zoo is obviously keen to educate people including children, so perhaps this could be suggested.