THOUSANDS of East London locals have been concerned about the condition of the East London Zoo, including the sickly looking animals.
Since the initial uproar, the zoo’s management have made some improvements in upgrading the facilities and improving the animal’s diet plans.
A number of images of malnourished bears began trending on social media and led to the creation of a petition calling for the zoo to be closed down (GO! & Express, “Petition to close down city’s zoo” January 25, 2018).
Rio Ashington visited the zoo at the time in the early days of the outcry and said the conditions were shocking.
“There is litter, the cages are filthy and the animals look depressed. The animals that are alone look miserable. As for the state of the snake exhibit – there was faeces smeared all over the floor and the windows in the snakes cages were filthy.”
Lawrence Anthony Earth Organisation, in the Ukraine, CEO Lionel de Lange, who visited the EL Zoo earlier this year to assess the conditions posted this on his Facebook page:
“I travelled to South Africa in February 2018 and visited the zoo and met with management. The photos did not look good at all and the bears were moulting but also they seemed to be very scrawny and small.
“Their diet was definitely not adequate, and after consulting with staff members, who were very keen to help, I suggested some changes and we increased their diet intake and also the variety, as you can see in the photos.
“Unfortunately, the rest of the project has stalled and we are still waiting on various quotes to build new or to adapt their existing enclosure,” De Lange said.