Zoos, Please do better

Adrian Bowman, Editor

Did you know that some zoos are not nice to animals and some animals are not happy or comfortable in their own “home”? Zoos should have bigger areas and be nicer to animals. There are many benefits to zoos. A recent study has found that mammals who live in zoos have a longer life expectancy than those living in the wild. Zoos protect against a species going extinct but there are also many cons of zoos. Zoos may rescue animals but a large number of zoos are also responsible for cruelty and unethical actions. Many zoos do more harm than good. Zoos should be more wild-like.  Zoo animals don’t need to be petted, trained, made to act like pets, and live in small areas.  

Adrian Bowman

 If zoos build bigger areas and add more natural recreational things for animals, animals and people will be more happy. Zoos need to have way less petting zoos. Brookfield Zoo is a good zoo because it has big areas and keeps expanding to provide more wild-like habitats for animals such as gorillas in the recently new Tropic World habitat. Some students understand this and agree. “They should have bigger areas and we should try to improve their natural habitats. Also we should make sure that the animals get the right kind of food and have other animals they can play with,” said Ari Karafiol, ‘20.  Others agree. “I think most zoos I’ve been to are pretty well maintained but I agree animals should have large enclosures,” notes Wendy Wang, ‘22. “Yes I think that zoos should have bigger areas for animals. We are lucky to have great zoos in Chicago, but I have been to other smaller cities with zoos and they are way smaller. It made me sad because the animals didn’t seem to have a good quality of life,” stated Ms. Ropski, Diverse Learners Teacher.

Many animals are born there and are kept with their families. Zoos should help and take care of sick or hurt animals, but if they get better and it’s safe for them, they should try to reintroduce animals back to the wild. More zoos are starting to have rehabilitation/reintroduction programs. Wildlife rehabilitation is good for animals and helps build good relationship between animals and humans, but not all animals can be sent back to the wild. Animals should continue to live in zoos if they lose their homes due to habitat destruction or are threatened in the wild. Some zoos are changing for the better.  Besides being a source of entertainment, many are now providing conservation programs and providing us with educational facts about how to best help threatened animals. Maybe in the future, children who are currently visiting zoos and learning about nature will grow up to be more informed conscientious adults who will help protect threatened and endangered animals and nature. The more we learn about what’s best for animals the more happy zoos with happy animals and with less problems we will have.

Adrian Bowman