WAZA statement on China donkey-tiger incident

Date: 2017/06/26


WAZA Condemns Live Donkey Being Fed to Tigers at Chinese Zoo


7 June 2017


WAZA Condemns Live Donkey Being Fed to Tigers at Chinese Zoo


The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) is appalled by the recent video depicting a live donkey being dropped into a tiger enclosure at a zoo in China and strongly condemns the act as cruel and inhumane.


WAZA calls on the Chinese Association of Zoological Gardens to investigate the incident and adopt clear guidelines on the live-feeding of animals at zoos and aquariums. WAZA also urges stronger safety measures at Chinese zoos and aquariums to prevent a re-occurrence of the incident.


The donkey-tiger issue occurred at the Yancheng Safari Park in Jiangsu province, where news reports indicate disgruntled zoo investors attempted to remove animals from the zoo and re-sell them. When zoo security refused to let the animals be taken away, several men said to be employed by the investors pushed a donkey out of a truck into the moat adjacent to the tiger enclosure.


Two tigers can be seen in the video slowly mauling the donkey to death over the course of approximately 30 minutes. Zoo visitors can also be heard gasping off-camera.


Video of the incident shot by an unidentified zoo visitor has been viewed more than 1.4 million times since it was uploaded on 5 June.


WAZA published the WAZA Animal Welfare Strategy: Caring for Wildlife in 2015, a document calls for institutions to “treat all animals in our zoos and aquariums with respect.” It also states that “consideration of whole-of-life care must be given to all animals in our care, including those used in live feeding.”


Although the Yancheng Safari Park is not a WAZA member, WAZA urges all zoos and aquariums around the world to adopt the principles of the WAZA Animal Welfare Strategy.


WAZA is the voice of a global community of zoos and aquariums and a catalyst forjoint conservation action. WAZA represents over 350 regional associations, national federations and zoo and aquariums in more than 50 countries. For more information, visit www.waza.org or contact secretariat@waza.org.


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