HuffPo Article: Seattle Zoo Elephant’s Unexpected Death Prompts Important Discussion About Animal Captivity
The tragic and sudden death of Watoto, WPZ’s African elephant, once again has put the Zoo into the national spotlight. Huffington Post picked up the story.
Here is an excerpt:
“In the wild at 45 years old they’re still having babies,” Alyne Fortgang, a Seattle resident and critic of the zoo’s elephant exhibit, told the AP. “Watoto was lame. She had arthritis, chronic bouts of colic and skin conditions, all caused by her environment.”
For years, activists have lamented the continuation of elephant exhibits at zoos and called for the animals to be relocated to sanctuaries. They assert that the confined living quarters negatively impact the well-being of elephants.
Friends of the Woodland Park Zoo, an advocacy group that advocates for the relocation of the zoo’s elephants to sanctuaries, said in a post on their website that “Watoto’s life must not be in vain” and “confinement in a zoo takes a physical and psychological toll on these far-ranging and intelligent animals.”