Zoos - Good or bad?

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Good but misused.
The function of zoos needs to drastically change in the world of internet, global travel, HDTV and webcams. Fifty years ago zoos allowed people to see animals they would otherwise have no ability to see. Now anyone can just google the darn things.

Zoos should be revamped to become sanctuaries for local fauna with a focus on internet viewing. In Canada they could contain: beaver, bear, moose. In Zimbabwe: lions, wildebeest, and antelope. Anyone, anywhere could webcam in and watch the animals in their natural environment (not caged).

This would serve the purpose of access to rare animal (rare being relative), it would provide education, conservation, preservation and a host of other services.

The current model is both outdated and cruel. A new model is desperately needed.

@VicZinc Good but misused. The function of zoos needs to drastically change in the world of internet, global travel, HDTV...

I kinda have to disagreed. The internet is definitely a great source of education but it will never beat first hand experience. Seeing a monkey on YouTube is nothing compared to seeing one in person. Not that zoos are completely ethical, but as far as experiencing foreign animals goes, zoos offer a good way to do it without spending thousands of dollars to go to a different country and see them.

@StickCaveman I kinda have to disagreed. The internet is definitely a great source of education but it will never beat first...

I get that and agree to some extent, and here is another point: Urbanization has resulted in many people growing up that never even see their local fauna. I took a truckload of urban kids last year to a field near a local college and caught some snakes, toads, frogs, dragonflies etc. They had near seen these before, and they live within biking distance of the field.

I grew up in the Great Lakes region and had never seen a live beaver in this area. They are here because I see dead ones on the road.

I went to Germany 30 years ago and the zoo had the coolest working beaver sanctuary. They were exotic animals to those local folks, and I got to see them swim, build a dam, chew down trees, something I never experience here because our zoo have lions and tigers and monkeys. To me a beaver or a possum are still exotic if you've never seen one.

Also with global travel, I know it is not practical but more and more people will be able to visit zoos in other countries then every would have happened 50 years ago.

@VicZinc I get that and agree to some extent, and here is another point: Urbanization has resulted in many people growing...

Plus don't forget 50 years ago there was only still photos, internet is infinitely more intimate than what your grandparents had.

Of course they're good.

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