Zoo Negara has had its fair share of ups and downs, especially after they came close to shutting down as they saw a huge dip in foot traffic. However, Malaysians came through the moment they caught wind of the situation by making family trips to the zoo and volunteering with animal care.
Unfortunately, it looks like the zoo is still lacking in some major ways when it comes to making sure the animals are well cared for as a video has surfaced on Twitter of an orangutan fiddling and nibbling on a piece of plastic. Cmylia (@cmyliajones), who witnessed and filmed the situation, not only shared the video on her Twitter account but also submitted it to Zoo Negara themselves.
We are trying to make things better but even zoo negara let their animals eat plastic 😔 pic.twitter.com/LW9mZHdIdv
— Cmylia (@cmyliajones) September 2, 2019
Cmylia wrote, “We are trying to make things better but even Zoo Negara lets their animals eat plastic.”
We understand Cmylia’s anger and frustration, but we’re pretty sure the zoo wouldn’t have ‘let’ the orangutan chew on the piece of plastic on purpose, right?
She probably thought so too, as she initially approached Zoo Negara via their Instagram account with the video in order to get some answers. They had apparently ‘seen’ her message, but only responded to her a day later.
Zoo Negara responded to her complaint via Instagram with, “Hi, thank you for your feedback, and we truly appreciate your generous concern about our wildlife. We definitely take your comment as our top priority and will overcome this situation. Thanks again for your support and have a pleasant day ahead.”
She had also filed online and offline complaints regarding the issue and received similar generic ‘Okay, thank you’ responses. While Zoo Negara’s rote responses certainly do not help, the zoo itself wouldn’t be giving the animals plastic to eat, so nature advocate Freyr (@sunfloweraidil) made clear the potential cause of the incident – the visitors.
it’s expected that disrespectful visitors to throw things at the animals/enclosures.
but that does not mean, this issue cannot be controlled or contained. most of them face zoochosis (stereotypic behaviour in captivity) due to less enrichment activity. zoo singapore bersih je.
— freyr (@sunfloweraidil) September 3, 2019
Freyr wrote, “It’s expected that disrespectful visitors would throw things at the animals/enclosures. But that doesn’t mean that this issue cannot be controlled or contained.”
What does it say about Malaysians if we are unable to save both the animals in the wild and the animals in captivity from our wasteful, destructive ways? While we may never find out who the true culprit behind the littering at Zoo Negara was, let’s hope that the piece of plastic has been properly disposed of and that this never happens again.
Cmylia’s posting has since garnered over 5,300 retweets.
Zoo Negara should have the right to fine those who litter on their premises to help with their funding.
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