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Write An Argumentative Essay On Zoos

Modern zoos all over the world have been trying to shift their focus from pure profit and entertainment to things like conservation, science, education, and recreation, which can be ethically justified as long as they guarantee the welfare of their animals. They engage in research, preserve biodiversity (genetic and species) that may be threatened or at times even extinct in the wild, and they provide much needed funding for research and conservation projects across the world.

Only a number of zoos worldwide are committed to enhancing the welfare of animals, acceptable standards and best practices but these are still under debate. The subject of capturing wild animals and putting them in cages, however, remains to be a hotly disputed topic by various proponents, each with their own argument to their side. This paper argues that zoos are not for animals and whatever claims these institutions have to justify their existence can be achieved by more practical, humane, and sustainable solutions.

Conservation can be summed up to one plausible justification for the keeping of wild animals in captivity: to ensure a secure population that could be used to return a species to the wild, should it ever become extinct. Zoos claim that without their conservation efforts, certain species would become extinct. Moreover, zoos claim to take in only the animals that need the most care. However, there is hardly any zoo that registers their animals on an international species database, and many of these zoo animals are not endangered, orphaned, or injured at all.

Even though there are thousands of endangered species, zoos have only been able to return about 16 species to the wild with varying level of success. Most zoo animals released in the wild, if there are any, don’t survive. This is because zoos don’t provide the right environment for a successful captive breeding project. The animals would need to live in habitats resembling their natural ones, especially in terms of climate and fauna. The animals would also need to be raised with minimal human contact and in populations large enough to provide a natural social balance.

The most common collections in majority zoos are animals that attract bigger crowds, not necessarily the ones that need conserving. Zoos point out a few captive breeding and release projects which they cite to demonstrate the success of this kind of human intervention. Successful captive breeding is the pride of every zoo and certain new-born animals attract people’s interest, which means increased revenue. It is generally thought that a zoo where animals successfully breed is a good one. However, closer inspection reveals that the effectiveness of these and many other captive breeding programs is, at best, limited.

Many successful zoo births are results of human intervention. In vitro fertilization, assistance during birth, or taking over the care of young ones are common practices in zoos. Such “artificial” breeding can hardly be proof of animal welfare. To properly create natural conditions such as climate, habitat, and feeding is complex and costly, and zoos lack sufficient space and resources to reproduce a natural environment, provide a normal social equilibrium of the species, or maintain a healthy gene pool ordered by natural selection.

Zoos’ breeding programs require huge amounts of resources, even though breeding animals in captivity isn’t the best way to help in conservation. For example, it is at least 50 times more expensive to maintain elephants in zoos than to protect the same numbers of elephants in the wild. The substantial costs of captive breeding could be used more effectively to protect these wild species and their habitats. Using the money for conservation programs in the wild – by creating more protected reserves for instance – will not only allow the animals to live in their natural habitat, it also helps balance whole eco-systems.

The only realistic way to stop extinction is to preserve the animals habitat and ecosystems. A vast majority of the world’s zoos have their main interest in breeding programs in attracting visitors who love to see baby animals. Zoos are long considered to be a great teaching tool where children and adults can learn a lot about wild animals. While a number of zoos make an effort to provide some sort of education to visitors, they most they can do is show people how animals behave in captivity.

Zoo-goers are unable to witness how these animals truly live. Instead, visitors observe animals’ reactions to boredom, depression, and stress. In reality, most people only spend a few seconds at each display, waiting for the animals to do something “exciting,” but they gain little, if any, true understanding of the animals. Even if there were an abundance of signs, descriptions, and educational displays beside the animals’ cages, very little of this information, if any, will be remembered.

People would learn more effectively by watching videos, wildlife documentaries, slides, interactive modules, graphic displays, and computer simulations that show wild animals in their natural environments, and allows visitors to truly understand the way they hunt, feed, raise their young, breed, respond to and display affection, fear, pain, hunger, instinct and ultimately how they behave and survive naturally Finally, zoos teach children and other patrons that it is acceptable to confine other beings.

A US study found no compelling evidence for the claim that zoos and aquariums promote attitude change, education, or interest in conservation in visitors. The study authors urged zoos to stop citing a zoofunded study which claimed an educational benefit from visits “as this conclusion is unwarranted and potentially misleading to consumers. ” In 2010, a Government-commissioned study found that “Concerns remain, however, with regard to the lack of available evidence about the effectiveness” of conservation and education projects in zoos. Eventually, people will view zoos as nothing more than a collection of sad and exploited animals.

Such a lesson, learned in spite of the best interests of those animals, teaches disrespect for life and gives a very bad example about how we should treat these creatures that share our planet. Zoo animals that experience all their suffering eventually lose their primal instincts and succumb to various diseases within their zoo environments. These animals used to hunt in packs or herds but when the food is already prepared there is no need for groups or hunting. Many diseases that plague zoo animals include various forms of the herpes virus, E. coli, Hepatitis B, Shigella, and Tuberculosis, all passable to human beings.

The scientific term for repetitive behaviors in captive animals is “Abnormal Repetitive Behavior” also known as ARB. This covers all the strange-looking repetitive behaviors we can recognize in captive animals, like zoo animals. These behaviors are caused by conditions like depression, boredom and psychoses. Some zoos actually give anti-depressants or tranquillizers to control the behavior problems of some of their animals. Unlike zoos, animal sanctuaries are non-profit rescue centers that provide shelter for abused, unwanted, neglected, and orphaned animals.

These are the groups that need to be funded more because they focus on what is best for the animals without making profit. They advocate spaying and neutering and attempt to find suitable homes for animals. People can learn about animals by observing them in their natural habitat, where they are living the live that they were meant to live. We do not have to learn about these amazing wild animals by looking at them in the eye; we can do so by watching wildlife videos, television programs or by reading about them on the internet or in books and magazines.

With biologists using technology to keep track wild animals with GPS trackers, live cameras, and the Internet, people don’t need to visit animals in person7. All they have to do is open an animal tracker application on their device and see wildlife in real time. Zoos are, for the most part, businesses that capitalize on breeding, buying, and selling animals. These animals are shown to zoogoers for, more than anything else, revenue. Their main priority is profit, not animal welfare. Captive animals in zoos often suffer physically and mentally being enclosed.

Even the best artificial environments can’t come close to matching the space, diversity, and freedom that animals have in their natural habitats. This deprivation causes many zoo animals to become stressed or mentally ill. Capturing animals in the wild also causes much suffering by splitting up families and disrupting social ecosystems. Captivity can make animals behave unnaturally. Some of these animals inflict harm on themselves and even some try to commit suicide. Majority of them die decades earlier than their wild relatives. Zoo animals are robbed of their right to exist naturally as they should.

Their lives are not their own and they are prevented from fulfilling basic needs such as hunting. grazing, roaming, and developing important social structures. If zoos are truly concerned with the preservation of species, they should instead work to preserve animals’ natural habitat. We, humans, are destroying the natural habitat of numerous species through pollution, rangeland degradation, topsoil erosion, crop and groundwater contamination, and other harmful processes. There should be more laws governing the treatment of zoo animals.

These laws should decide if the animal should stay in the wild, and when the animal can be released in the U. S. The laws should also make sure animals are given the proper environment to dwell in such as recreating the wild with real bushes and rocks and sunlight, providing the animal with what it would need to actually survive in its natural environment. The laws should hold people liable for making profit from these creatures of nature by selling them to hunting ranches, pet shops, circuses, exotic meat industry, and research facilities. We as human beings owe it to all zoo animals to keep them in the wild and free – as nature intended.

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