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Zoos selling animal parts to private collections?

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by Agalychnis, 17 Jun 2014.

  1. Agalychnis

    Agalychnis Active Member

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    If a zoo animal (for instance elephant or tiger) has to be euthanized, do you think the zoo should be allowed to sell its body parts?

    The body parts might be worth a lot of money - but they're from an endangered species!

    I think that situation would be an issue...
     
  2. cleusk

    cleusk Well-Known Member

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    No way! It's sending the message that selling animal parts is okay and acceptable. And it's not. It's hard enough dealing with the evil hunters and traders as it is.
     
  3. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    Well, assuming trade of the parts is even legal in the place where the zoo is... I can't imagine many zoos would do it because it would likely be seen as promoting the trade of such parts. Even if it's from a "safe" source, there is fear that it would fuel the demand and lead people to buy from not-so-nice sources.
     
  4. Taisha

    Taisha Well-Known Member

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    It also sends the wrong message to zoo visitors. Shouldn't the zoo teach them to respect animals?
    I remember an orang utan dying after about 40 years at the same zoo: First people were invited to "come and see her a last time", attracting a huge crowd in front of her window, watching her. Afterwards her body was given away to be stuffed and exhibited.
    Another example, the famous polar bear Knut, loved by many and against much protest given away to be stuffed.
     
  5. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    Eh, I don't have a problem with zoos giving away parts for educational purposes, like having a stuffed museum specimen or a skeleton on display, or keeping parts for a "touch" station.
     
  6. Elephas Maximus

    Elephas Maximus Well-Known Member

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    Please, refrain from 'stuffing' when mentioning modern taxidermy. Knut and many other museum residents would be upset.

    Preserving is always better than incinerating. Look at the stats of your zoo and check up how many animals are left for posterity to study up close & personal, and how many gone to oblivion at the rendering plant.

    If one doesn't want to see a 'zoo star' in the museum, it's more wise to not visiting a museum than to protest the mounting of specimen.
    Dead animals don't care what happens to their bodies at all, otherwise all the predators, scavengers, vets, hunters, taxidermists, fishermen and farmers would die instantly, having their mind tortured by ghosts :D

    When calling the practice of selling the endangered animals to private owners inappropriate, does anyone realize that their fate & usage can be traced as well as in the case with living ones? So the parts would be used only for education & display, with no tiger skins & elephant tusks ending up on black market.
    Money raised from the selling of an animal can be used for the zoo's needs, for example, exhibit renovation.
    The owner should have the licence to keep such specimens in his collection, and their origin is verified by paperwork for each specimen. Individual traces are very often indicated here.
    If an animal had a micro chip, it can be left in the completed mount for ID. Same with bird rings & other tags.
    When the specimen goes to private collection in the same country where it lived in captivity, no CITES paperwork is needed, since no international trade happens.
    In the case of international trade, it goes smoothly when done legally.
    For example, I ordered & got a skull of critically endangered crocodylian species (guess which one) for only $ 90 - just because it's captive-bred and surplus.
     
  7. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    but animals don't wear clothes anyway, so their mounts aren't "nude". And I don't think the animals care. They are dead.
     
  8. Elephas Maximus

    Elephas Maximus Well-Known Member

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    But well, can't the officials just check regularly if the specimen remains in the designated collection, tagged properly?! This is applied to customs-seized items made from endangered species that were donated to museums.
    And I doubt that a private collector would grind a rhino horn from the mounted specimen into the pills, or cut away the tusks from walrus skull for carving.
    We value the beauty of specimens preserved in their natural condition!
     
  9. Elephas Maximus

    Elephas Maximus Well-Known Member

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    Respect the specimens please. They are not stuffed corpses, but skins with epidermal derivatives (horns, nails & claws, scales, beak sheaths, feathers), mounted on a sturdy, lightweight, anatomically-correct form, often with some cleaned bones left inside - skull, feet & wings for birds, toe bones for many vertebrates, and skulls for amphibians, fishes, chelonians & crocodylians.
    Humans are better preserved in alcohol as wet specimens, by plastination as dry specimens, or casted in wax (the latter option lets you survive the process :) )