Zoos & Aquariums

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, December 1992:

The American Association of
Zoological Parks and Aquariums
announced November 6 that it would rein-
state the accreditation of the Columbus Zoo
in Columbus, Ohio, effective January 1.
The zoo and former director Jack Hanna
were suspended in April for violating the
AAZPA code of ethics by importing two
pandas from China for an exhibit that closed
in September after attracting 925,000 of the
zoo’s 1.5 million visitors. AAZPA con-
tends––along with most other wildlife pro-
tection advocates––that China’s panda
rentals are not in the best interest of either
the species or the individual animals. A
week after the AAZPA announcement, the
Columbus Zoo executive committee named
Hanna “director emeritus” and replaced him
with longtime general manager Gerald
Borin.

China and Japan traded pandas
in mid-November, in a swap intended to
give Japan a mating couple.
The Toledo chapter of the
American Association of Zookeepers emp-
tied its treasury in October to contribute
$4,800 to rhinocerous protection in Kenya.
“Rhino woman” Anna Merz has now raised
more than $25,000 for the program through
the Toledo zookeepers. Merz recently
returned to Kenya after a 15-city North
American speaking tour with over $100,000
in donations––none larger than the Toledo
gift.
The last animal in the Sarajevo
Zoo, a bear, died November 2 after endur-
ing more than 200 days of shelling and star-
vation.
The New England Aquarium is
seeking homes for 100 animals including
five harbor seals and eight sea lions who
 

were left homeless by the September 21 clo-
sure of the fiancially troubled Cape Cod
Aquarium.
Sealand of the Pacific went out of
business November 1. Three captive orcas
were sold to Sea World for a sum rumored
to be circa $4 million. Located in Victoria,
British Columbia, Sea World enjoyed
unusual success in breeding captive orcas;
two were born within five weeks of each
other in December 1991 and February 1992.
But the marine park was also a longtime tar-
get of protests by local animal rights groups.
In 1982 a whale drowned in a tangle of net-
ting after an activist tried to free her. The
park was also where trainer Keltie Byrne,
20, was drowned by three orcas during a
water show––the only time captive orcas
have ever killed a human being.
A coalition of 22 animal rights
groups has endorsed the opposition of
Animal Rights Mobilization to plans by the
Ocean Journey aquarium in Denver to
obtain, exhibit, and offer swimming with
several bottlenosed dolphins. Within
Denver, the dolphin acquisition is opposed
by the Society for Earth Ethics. According
to Ocean Journey, the dolphins will be
obtained from captive sources after their
facilites are completed in 1996.
The National Zoo in Washington
D.C. in mid-November unveiled an Amazon
jungle exhibit featuring 50 different kinds of
tree, 308 smaller plant species, 100 land
animals, and 50 types of fish. One of the
most complex representations of an ecosys-
tem any zoo has yet attempted, the new
exhibit drew raves from Newsweek a n d
interest from zoo critics, whose objections
to zoos have long centered on the lack of
genuinely natural habitat.
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