Posted 25 августа 2023,, 06:01

Published 25 августа 2023,, 06:01

Modified 25 августа 2023,, 06:25

Updated 25 августа 2023,, 06:25

Friendship by elephants and rhinos: why should Russia take exotic animals from Africa?

Friendship by elephants and rhinos: why should Russia take exotic animals from Africa?

25 августа 2023, 06:01
Ирина Мишина
Russia's friendship with Africa sometimes takes on an exotic format. After a meeting with representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture of South Africa, Rosselkhoznadzor officials announced their intention to import African animals for Russian zoos. How will this venture end — for the animals and for us?
Wild animals


Rosselkhoznadzor cheerfully reported: it is planned to replenish the «assortment» of domestic zoos with exotic animals brought from the Republic of South Africa (South Africa). The nuances of this venture, the leadership of the department has allegedly already discussed with colleagues from South Africa.

… For some reason, I immediately remembered my last visit to the zoo. The cages of rare animals were decorated with plaques with the names of very specific sponsors. Because there is not enough money for food for predators, and not only for them. But the Rosselkhoznadzor hardly delved into such trifles as feeding and treatment of animals, their vaccination and care. Feed, as you know, is now in short supply, their import has actually been stopped and they are becoming more expensive. There are also problems with vaccines. In addition, we still do not have a register of red book animals, so Rosprirodnadzor wonders in which pet zoo its inspectors will now meet a lion, and in which a rhinoceros.

Also tormented by the question: will there be an exchange. That is, will our polar bears, foxes and hares be taken to sultry Africa…

«In Russian zoos there are generally strict and controversial norms: low temperature regime, bars. Recently, a traveling circus came, there was a demonstration of an elephant, which was kept at a temperature of 16 degrees. What is it for an animal that is used to 40-degree African heat? And then there's a cage and a striped sky… In the Crimea there is a safari park „Taiga“, where lions have to be closed indoors for the winter. This is definitely detrimental to wild animals, especially if the temperature is below zero. And how to close elephants and rhinos indoors? I can't imagine the scale of this disaster, » says Karen Dallakyan, veterinarian, head of the Chelyabinsk zoo «Save Me».

After all, each animal has its own habitat, a natural area where it comfortably exists in certain climatic and vital conditions for it.

Recently, the Moscow zoo was shocked by a case that struck many. Condor Kuzya was fed the wrong food by visitors, and he died. This once again suggests that keeping animals in a zoo is by no means safe.

«Our veterinary market is completely filled with falsifications, there are big problems with vaccines, and with doctors. Many people remember the case of a polar bear with a tin can stuck in its mouth. He was transported to Moscow because there are often no veterinarians on the ground at all, » says veterinarian Karen Dallakyan.

So soon we will have to recall, apparently, the imperishable lines of Korney Chukovsky:

«And prowling along the road

Elephants and rhinos

And they say angrily:

«Why is there no Aibolit?»

And next to the hippos

Grabbed their tummies:

They, the hippos,

Tummies hurt.»

It is also worth remembering that African colleagues have quite a lot of problems with international laws due to the breeding of rare wild animals for the sake of hunting. There is close interbreeding, and the domestication of cubs in parks for visitors, and then shooting on the hunt.

Our compassionate compatriots, by the way, have already begun to resent the importation of African animals.

Valentina A.: «We are talking about withdrawal from natural conditions, and to settle the heat-loving in cold conditions, what a mockery! And stop hiding behind the fact that it is useful for their preservation, it is useful for them there, at home!!!»

Nata Shilova: «Everyone knows that the animal is torn from nature, slowly suffering… And who will come to the zoo to see them… It's for the sake of those that it suffers…!».

lyudmila mila: «Zoos are needed now primarily to rescue animals abandoned by black owners of moving zoos.»

It got to the point that the Green Alternative Party made a special statement.

«Changing the vector in the development of international relations towards African countries is certainly a good thing in the current conditions. But Russian-African ties should not negatively affect the environment or the lives of lesser brothers. Therefore, we consider the Rosselkhoznadzor's initiative unacceptable and dehumanizing Russian society. All these zooturms are a relic of the medieval past, which it is high time to replace with affordable, and most importantly, safe education, » the leader of «FOR!» Ruslan Khvostov believes.

In addition, there is a bad suspicion that African animals are not being transported for Russian state circuses and zoos.

«We know that safari parks have been created as amusements for rich people. In particular, they are in the Moscow region. There are tigers and lions there. There is a suspicion that the import of African animals should just replenish these collections. And very specific businessmen are lobbying for this, » says veterinarian, animal rights activist Karen Dallyakyan.

So to begin with, it would be nice to trace the corruption trail in this whole story with the importation of elephants, tigers, lions and rhinos.