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ZooChat Cup finals: Beauval vs Bronx

Discussion in 'ZooChat Cup' started by CGSwans, 9 Jan 2020.

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Beauval v Bronx: Birds

Poll closed 11 Jan 2020.
  1. Beauval 3-0 Bronx

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. Beauval 2-1 Bronx

    25.6%
  3. Bronx 2-1 Beauval

    74.4%
  4. Bronx 3-0 Beauval

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. CGSwans

    CGSwans Well-Known Member

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    Sharp-eyed observers will note that we are ‘due’ for a match featuring Plzen and Beauval, but that one has a biome-based category, and I’m going to intersperse those in among matches based on the more traditional formats. Hence, no Plzen just yet.

    So. Beauval. Bronx. Birds.

    (I’ve always appreciated accidental alliteration.)
     
  2. Vision

    Vision Well-Known Member

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    Interesting match-up! Bronx, of course, has two large bird houses, a walkthrough jungle and a nice sea bird aviary, but will Beauval's bird house/tropical hall hybrid and unparalleled bird show be able to beat it? I think I prefer Bronx's World of Birds over everything at Beauval personally, so I'll vote 2-1 for Bronx, but I think this could definitely be a close one.
     
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  3. Rayane

    Rayane Well-Known Member

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    Beauval's bird show is out of this world, 2-1 Beauval for me.
     
  4. antonmuster

    antonmuster Well-Known Member

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    I have not visited either zoo, but the equatorial dome is featured on Beauval's website: Nouveauté 2020 : dôme équatorial | ZooParc de Beauval
    The dome is due to open on 8 February, so almost finished. The images and video on the website imo look appealing (as promotional material should), however, the dome seems to follow the 'mini zoo under a dome' design philosophy of Gondwanaland and Jungola, rather than the 'miniature ecosystem' philosophy of Burger's Bush or Masoala. Discussion of the development on the french zoo forum is highly critical/sceptic: Leszoosdanslemonde • Afficher le sujet - Un dôme pour Beauval
    Here is the link to corresponding discussion on zoochat: Zooparc de Beauval News [ZooParc de Beauval]
     
  5. amur leopard

    amur leopard Well-Known Member

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    Beauval has by far the best bird show I have ever seen and ever will I think. They also have 3-4 massive greenhouses just for birds.
    On the other hand Bronx has world of birds and a few other nice bird exhibits. However it is 2-1 to Beauval for me.
     
  6. CGSwans

    CGSwans Well-Known Member

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    In line with past rulings, the Beauval rainforest dome doesn’t come within-scope as an exhibit until it opens to the public. Birds that are known to be present on site, but off-display, can be factored into discussions comparing collections but the onus is on the person raising them to be able to demonstrate, if prompted, that the birds are actually there.
     
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  7. lintworm

    lintworm Well-Known Member

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    Don't forget the Hippo aviary in Beauval.
     
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  8. Mr. Zootycoon

    Mr. Zootycoon Well-Known Member

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    It seems that Beauval's bird show is its main asset.

    I'm going to open a dangerous discussion here, but let's talk about the welfare of the birds in the show. I'm not overly familiar with this particular show, but I've seen enough and I've talked to enough people to know that birds in flight shows are often - very often - housed in terribly small avairies outside show times, if they aren't confined to a single branch that is. We're talking about dozens of birds ranging from kites to macaws to cranes to ibises. Large birds with complex behaviours that need behavioural enrichment and adequate space throughout the day, and not just for an hour.

    I don't know the situation in Beauval, for all I know they have a huge avairy and they simply open the door and let the birds fly out willingly (as Avifauna in the Netherland has). But I think that knowledge is crucial for rating this bird show. Usually, I would give the benefit of the doubt about animal welfare. Who am I to judge? But I've seen it go wrong in bird shows so often, that this time I just can't do that.

    I accept that I put myself on a slippery slope here. But if the birds are housed in a "traditional" way - small, barren enclosures - , only for the spectacle of having even more birds in the air, then that's not justified in my opinion. I truly hope I'm proven wrong.

    On a more positive note, the hippo avairy looks downright fantastic, at least for the birds.
     
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  9. Vision

    Vision Well-Known Member

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    Yep, that's a thing I was considering as well. When you're sitting there looking at the bird show it's fantastic, but then you look behind the amphitheatre and see this, a row of 6-7 smallish seriema aviaries (6 pictured, I believe there was a slightly bigger one to the right of this picture as well that also had some parrots)... I don't want to make claims about the other holdings that aren't visible to the general public though, but I agree with the general tone of your concerns.
    While impressive, the show is also very chaotic with many birds ending up all over the place and just walking around between guests, or birds of prey walking among birds that in wild settings might otherwise be considered prey... I can imagine such a thing is very stressful, and I also imagine escapees among the harder-to-train birds have to occur fairly frequently.

    For the rest, I'm confused about @amur leopard 's post claiming there to be "3-4 massive greenhouses just for birds". On my visit there was the one close to the entrance that would definitely count and is mainly a bird house, but that was it... The other tropical houses (one for apes and reptiles, and one for gorillas and manatees) barely held any relevant bird collections at all.
    The bird house close to the entrance and the bird collection in the hippo aviary are definitely very impressive, however.

    All things considered, I don't personally think Beauval can compare to Bronx with its amazing World of Birds, which has to be one of the nicest and largest bird houses in the world anywhere... I don't have the time myself (exam tomorrow...) but I hope somebody can illustrate this further.
     
    Last edited: 9 Jan 2020
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  10. Rayane

    Rayane Well-Known Member

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    I do not know how the birds for the bird show are housed. Many zoos have offshow aviaries, most of them are not very attractive, but they should meet the minimum requirements of the birds.

    When you enter Beauval, there is a small waterway filled with ducks. Then you get to the Rhinoceros hornbills outdoor aviary and the Bird greenhouse (nice rarities in there). Then you have the Hippo aviary, which is trully great and the South American birds of prey aviary (maybe only Andean condors, but I'm pretty sure it had other species) which is on the way to the bird show from what I recall. I believe the Blue cranes are with the Okapi, the Siberian cranes have their own exhibit, really simple, but looks good enough.
     
  11. Mr. Zootycoon

    Mr. Zootycoon Well-Known Member

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    Just to get it right here in the open, this is the off-show seriema holding.

    [​IMG]

    This is not how a world class zoo like Beauval should keep their birds. This is indeed exactly what I had in mind. I can see the point that birds that are able to flap their wings in the flight show might cope with a smaller aviary (although I do not necessarily agree with it), but these are downright tiny. Large, intelligent and active birds like seriemas shouldn't be kept in those cages.

    On the other hand, looking at the hippo aviary I have a hard time thinking of any better enclosures for large wading birds like storks and cranes than this massive exhibit.

    [​IMG]

    In fact, I find it hard to believe both pictures (thanks to @Maguari!) are from the very same zoo!
     
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  12. amur leopard

    amur leopard Well-Known Member

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    I do happen to know how they are housed and I even have a photo of the aviary for the South American parrots when they are not on-show. Also, many of the show birds are onshow in the zoo when the bird show is not on.
    Secondly, welfare is not at all compromised by the show but rather it is improved, since the birds can fly freely for very long distances in the massive field where the show is staged.

    Also I believe that the cages shown in the photo above are the isolation areas for the seriemas so that the keepers can get them easily before the show and the seriemas have access to the aviary.
     
  13. Rayane

    Rayane Well-Known Member

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    Cages like the one used for the Seriemas are used in loooots of zoos for the offshow breeding pairs of birds. Maybe not for Seriemas though.
    And by the way, behind those cages, the south american aviary I was talking about, which is great.
     
  14. amur leopard

    amur leopard Well-Known Member

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    There are over 3-4 connected greenhouses next to the entrance. There are also about 30 aviaries for birds of prey around these greenhouses, an aviary for lammergeiers near the bottom of the zoo, the penguin exhibit, which is really quite large, the hippo aviary which is spectacular, free flying birds in the gorilla house and a few aviaries in the Australasian areas.

    So Beauval is very strong in this category.

    A few photos of the show:

    With the at the time in progress Equatorial Dome:


    show.jpg
    And allowing the White-tailed eagles to fish in the lake:
    eagle.jpg
    And finally a few whistling ducks:

    whistling ducks.jpg


    Lastly, the birds are only kept in the holding areas for short periods before the shows. The same goes for the eagles, condors, cockatoos, vultures, parrots, ibises, ducks, storks and cranes that fly during the show.
     
  15. Mr. Zootycoon

    Mr. Zootycoon Well-Known Member

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    Just to clear things up: I'm not necessarily against bird shows. I'm only questioning the husbandry of the birds outside the show, which is often quite poor in many (even major) zoos. The seriema cages, if they do spend considerable time in there, would be an example. However, I sincerely hope my concerns are unjustified and the birds have access to large aviaries outside show times.

    If you know the off-show holdings: could you maybe inform us about the quality?
     
  16. Rayane

    Rayane Well-Known Member

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    There are quite a few aviaries for birds of Prey indeed, but 30 sounds a bit much.
     
  17. amur leopard

    amur leopard Well-Known Member

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    The off-show holdings for the birds just before the show (only for around 20 minutes before the beginning) are quite poor, which is normal. However, as I said earlier, they only spend 20-30 minutes in them a day before being transferred back to their normal on-show enclosures.

    The 30 includes the aviaries for parrots which are also outside, I forgot to mention them, thanks for pointing it out. :)

    Also thanks to @Maguari for all the photo once again :), much appreciated.
     
  18. Vision

    Vision Well-Known Member

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    Just to be clear: you're referring to the "Serre des Oiseaux", right? I'd say claiming them to be 3-4 different buildings is already a bit of a stretch, given how there are barely any internal walls separating the 4 different structural modules and how birds and visitors can roam freely throughout the building - They're really a single entity in every single aspect of the design.
    Claiming each of them seperately to be "massive" is even more of an overstatement though, since each of those four is about 30m long and 15m wide (Google Maps gives figures around 28m x 12m, but I'll overestimate because they're not always correct). This gives a total floor space of about 450m² per structural entity, or of about 1800m² total. In comparison, World of Birds at Bronx Zoo has an area of about 2800m², and has two floors so really utilizes even more than that.

    I'd personally consider the "Serre des Oiseaux" to be a single greenhouse of moderate size (and great collection). :p
     
  19. Vision

    Vision Well-Known Member

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    About the bird show: aren't there a lot of species that occur only in the show? I didn't take any detailed notes but remember at least a few larger falcons, eagles, buzzards and large amounts of three species of kites that made appearances during the show but were, to my knowledge, not present in the bird-of-prey area or elsewhere in the zoo...
     
  20. amur leopard

    amur leopard Well-Known Member

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    Although World of Birds isn't all walkthrough and not all bird aviaries.