The Little Rock Zoo

.The Little Rock Zoo needs to step up and care for the animals better! Please read the several artciles here with deaths, sickness and a bald chimp!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Environmentalists Argue, No Way to Treat Wild Animals Facing Extinction

PRIMATE ATTRACTION: Visitors look at April, a 9-month-old female orang utan at Orang Utan Island, in Bukit Merah Laketown Resort, Perak. PICTURE: REUTERS

THEY are pampered with attention round the clock. But such mollycoddling of orang utans are against the order of nature, say enviromentalists.

They are outraged by what is going on a Malaysian island.

There, baby orang utans wear diapers, sleep in cots and are cared for by nurses dressed in masks and starched uniforms.

At Orang Utan Island, which is part of Bukit Merah Laketown Resort in Perak, tourists snap photos as they file past large windows that look onto a facility billed as the world's only rehabilitation and preservation facility for the endangered primates.

Baby orang utans like 2-month-old Tuah lie swaddled in nursery sheets and hold baby rattles, reported AFP.

Although fed every two hours by a staff of seven nurses on duty round the clock, environmentalists argue this is no way to treat wild animals facing extinction.

Managers of the 14-hectare island said they will return the animals to their natural jungle habitat.

So far none has been released.

Senior wildlife veterinarian Roy Sirimanne said: 'It is ridiculous to have orang utans in nappies and hand-raised in a nursery. How are they going to reintroduce the primates back in the wild?'

Dr Sirimanne, who has worked in zoos in South-east Asia and the Middle East over the past four decades, said baby orang utans need to be with their mothers to learn survival skills.

He said: 'Keeping the orangutans in captivity on an island is not a conservation programme. It amounts to desecration (of the species) as it is nearly impossible to reintroduce them back to the forest.'


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