Friends of Woodland Park Zoo Elephants, an organization dedicated to removing the zoo's three resident elephants to a natural elephant reserve in Tennessee, demonstrated outside the south entrance to the zoo Saturday morning.
Latest protest at zoo to remove elephants
Visitors entering the south entrance of the Woodland Park Zoo Saturday were greeted by 26 protesters holding signs that read "Lack of Space is Inhumane" and "Send Chai, Bamboo and Watoto to a sanctuary now!"
The protesters belong to the organization Friends of the Woodland Park Zoo Elephants. Their goal is to dislodge the zoo's three resident elephants, Chai, Bamboo and Watoto from their exhibit and send them to the 2,700 acre Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, Ten. to join the other 18 or so elephants.
They also want other zoos and circuses to do the same. The Elephant Sanctuary pays the expenses when they receive zoo and circus elephants.
Nancy Pennington and Alyne Fortgang are the organization's co-founders.
"We are here today to expose the plight of elephants in zoos and how they suffer," said Fortgang." The elephants at the Woodland Park Zoo are confined to a small barn for 17 hours a day, seven days a week, seven months a year. The Woodland Park Zoo does many wonderful things, but having an elephant exhibit in this climate is not one of the good things they do.
"Watoto and Bamboo don't get along. The exhibit's outdoor acre is separated into four pens. Elephants are migratory animals. If you confine them like this they suffer greatly. Chai paces on her front legs. Bamboo paces in circles. Watoto paces in semi-circles. We watched her stop to pee in the barn, and was then forced to walk in her own pee as she was so confined.
The purpose of elephants moving is to relieve tension in their joints. Otherwise they get foot infections."
Fortgang and the rest of her gang would like to see the three elephants keep moving, until they reach Tennessee.