I’ve written before about my conflicted feelings when it comes to zoos. All things being equal, I think animals are better off in their natural habitats. All things aren’t equal, though, and for some species, zoos are their only chance for survival. I went to the local zoo with family members over the weekend, and there were a few small enclosures that made me sad, but for the most part the animals looked healthy. We talked with a zookeeper who said their Amur leopards, of which there are only about 30 remaining in the wild, had produced four live cubs, including three females, that would go a long way toward retaining genetic variability.
May 9, 2011