Target: Zimbabwe Minister of Environment and Tourism Francis Nhema
Goal: Save wild elephant calves from being kidnapped and exported to zoos that are ill-equipped to care for them
Last fall, four baby elephants were captured, taken from their mothers, and exported from their natural home in Zimbabwe to zoos in China. Two of the calves were transported to the Taiyuan Zoo in northern China while the other two were sent to Xinjiang Safari Park in northwest China. Sadly, one baby elephant delivered to Taiyuan Zoo has already died and the remaining calf is seriously ill. Clearly, the Taiyuan Zoo is ill-equipped to provide proper care for elephants and Zimbabwe officials must stop the exportation of these incredible creatures immediately.
Various elephant experts and veterinarians have expressed concern for Taiyuan Zoo’s surviving male calf, as his skin is covered in marks and sores, his lower stomach is swelling, and he is severely underweight. Although it is obvious that the calf needs immediate veterinary care, the zoo has refused all offers of help.
While it is true that even modern zoos can find it difficult to follow the most up-to-date standards required to fulfill all of the physical, psychological and social needs of these complex and intelligent creatures, the Taiyuan Zoo’s atrocious living conditions are completely unacceptable. Denying veterinary care to an animal that is clearly in physical distress is extremely callous and cruel, and must not be tolerated.
By signing this petition, you will be urging Zimbabwe government officials to ban the kidnap and exportation of wild elephant calves and help save these intelligent creatures from a life of isolation and misery in an inadequate, unsuitable environment.
Dear Minister Nhema,
It has come to my attention that Zimbabwe authorities are considering exporting additional wild elephant calves to Chinese zoos in the coming months. However, I urge you to show compassion for these complex and intelligent creatures by banning all future exports of baby elephants.
Last fall, two baby elephants were kidnapped from their homes and families in Zimbabwe and exported to the Taiyuan Zoo in northern China. Sadly, one of these elephants has already died and the surviving calf is seriously ill. Taiyuan Zoo has denied the calf veterinary care despite the fact that his skin is covered in marks and sores and he is incredibly underweight.
Please do everything in your power to save Zimbabwe’s elephant calves from a life of isolation, physical pain and psychological distress in substandard Chinese zoos.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Martin Harvey via World Wildlife Fund