Ponder this! If you have circuses that use and abuse wild animals, what are you going to do when the animal [let's take elephants, for example]s are too old or sick to continue the nightly abuse of putting on shows for humans. How are you going to replace them. Look no further than Ringling Bros., they have the answer. Pretend to be deeply interested in,for example, Asian elephant conservation and open a breeding centre for elephants which can be used as a never-ending supply of new elephants for your circuses. WOW!
Yet again, they wax lyrical about their committment to the conservation of Asian elephants, “A lifelong symbol of he Greatest Show On Earth – the Asian elephant, is a respected and revered member of the Ringling Bros. family. In the interest of the species present and future wellbeing, the Ringling Bros & Bailey Center for Elephant Conservation, was established in 1995. Located in central Florida, this 200-acre, $5 million dollar, state-of-the-art facility, is dedicated to the conservation, breeding and understanding of these amazing animals.”
In modern debates about wildlife conservation certain values have become increasingly important. One focus is on animal welfare — the wellbeing of individual wild animals (e.g., in terms of animals’ flourishing, or suffering). There are also concerns about protecting species or populations of wild animals, about protecting the ecosystems of which wild animals form a part, and about protecting wild nature itself (Sandøe & Christiansen 2008).
What Ringling Bros are doing in their “conservation centre” has nothing to do with the above. They are not interested in returning any elephants to the wild or allowing them to live as natural a live as possible, allowing them to flourish rather than suffer. Their aim is to produce a factory line of new elephants to supply their circuses. FULL STOP. If they had a 1% interest in the welfare of wild animals, they would remove all wild animals from their circuses immediately.
What I find very curious is the fact that on the website for their “conservation centre”, there is a list of elephants who have died over the years:
Name Age Sex Reason for Death
Susan 61 Female Euthanasia due to declining health
Sid 45 Female Euthanasia due to declining health
Minyak 45 Female Euthanasia due to declining health
Banana 55 Female Euthanasia due to declining health
Sian 60 Female Euthanasia due to declining health
Lutzi 61 Female Euthanasia due to declining health
Josky no age given Female Euthanasia due to declining health [necropsy performed]
Calcutta 62 Female Euthanasia due to declining health [necropsy performed]
India 55 Female Euthanasia due to declining health
Why are there only females on the list?
Why isn’t there any specific illnesses given for the causes of death?