Earth Behind Bars
A day trip to the zoo is considered a treat within our society. A chance to ponder at the animals who have been brought in from around the world, for us to stare at them in their isolated enclosures. I recently was walking around Bristol zoo, and although seeing the day made me upset more than anything else. I watched as groups of adults and children gathered around the lion enclosure viewing point, banging on the glass to get even the slightest look or reaction from him. The lion continued to sleep, like he’d heard and seen it all before. I began to think about these animals lives. I began to think about them only viewing the four walls around them every day, the same food being fed to them at the same time day in, day out. The same sights they have no choice but to live through as each sun sets and rises. What kind of life was this for an animal? Where is there freedom in any of this? Like a human being subjected to a lifelong sentence in prison, these animals are being locked away in cages. Deprived of their ability to display natural behavior.
Of course there are debates that animals have been taken from the wild when they are endangered, to help their numbers rise and are being protected in zoos. But this doesn’t apply to every animal captured or bred for captivity. Others argue that we as humans are kept under radar in the form of a government so metaphorically we are also in cages, under confinement by the use of ‘rules’, so surely its fine for animals as well?
Recently there has been a lot of controversy around Sea World and its mistreatment of the Orca whale due to the documentary ‘BlackFish‘ which I will explore in greater depth within my first blog post. Watching the documentary myself and after vising the zoo, I was inspired to research more about what animals are having to face around the world for the entertainment of humans. I will explore arguments against the captivity of animals and also the arguments for.
Overall, my upcoming blog posts will be exploring the effects keeping animals in captivity has, regarding different animals and different styles of captivity. It may just make you think twice when seeing an animal behind those caged bars.