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Zoos that are NOT worth a visit

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by Norwegian moose, 26 Jul 2015.

  1. Norwegian moose

    Norwegian moose Well-Known Member

    13 Feb 2013
    @Snowleopard has written in his roadtripthread that he "visits zoos so you dont have to" So I thought we could list zoos in this thread that definetely are NOT worth a visit, so we all can avoid these neglected, ramshackle and awfull places. I am not talking about facilites that many people wouldnt care to visit, because they are very small or not noteworthy. And I am not talking about zoos that have a few bad exhibits, or perhaps a bad primate and cat house, while the rest of the zoo may range from mediocre to superb. What I am talking (or rather writhing about) are those awfull and some even hellhole "zoos" of the world. The zoos listed in this thread can be located in America, or in the rest of the world. Alternativaly we could make lists of the zoos that actually are more or less worth a visit, and not the awfull ones, but I find this the best way to do it. Can you contribute with lists of such places?
  2. temp

    temp Well-Known Member

    5 Jul 2014
    I suspect it is impossible to make such a list, and will only result in discussions and disagreements. Just look at the long recent discussion about SeaWorld in the North American section of this forum. That thread quite clearly has people that think SW is awful and shouldn't be visited, while others in the same thread think it is worthy of a visit. It'll be entirely impossible to find a level of agreement on the requirement for being a bad zoo. Where is the limit and how can it be defined exactly? Additionally, a bad zoo in e.g. UK will invariably be quite a bit better than a bad zoo in e.g. China. Trying to shoehorn countries with such different good/bad standards into a single list is highly misleading. Finally, things can change fast: a bad zoo today can change to a decent zoo within a fairly short time, especially as many bad zoos are smaller and don't require huge changes to rise in quality.
  3. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

    16 May 2010
    Wilds of Northumberland
    I would argue that even a horrific zoo which has little or nothing to redeem it is *still* worth at least one visit, as I feel it is always worth seeing a place with your own eyes in order to be better able to judge it. Moreover, seeing collections whose flaws outweigh their strengths allows one to appreciate the *good* places all the more.

    The closest I can come to suggesting collections which are not worth a visit is not a single collection, but a chain, and not even one which is "awful" or even particularly bad; the SeaLife chain, for the simple reason that once you have seen one you have more or less seen them all, and the chain overwhelmingly pushes out any "niche" for independent and more varied aquariums wherever it exerts its power :(
  4. Mr. Zootycoon

    Mr. Zootycoon Well-Known Member

    3 Jun 2015
    probably in a zoo
    Definitieve Troy aqua & delphinarium Belek

    It is a waterpark based on ancient Greece, including a dolphinarium.
    It's nothing more than an awefull show and a pool for the belugas featured in the show.
    The beluga pool is so small the belugas can hardly turn around, and so are forced to swim the same circel all day long. Besides the belugas, the show features bottlenose dolphins and a walruss. The show is interupted so people can touch the belugas and walruss.
    You pay 25 euros extra to see this dolphinarium

    There also is a small aquarium with two small freshwater tanks (one exhibits goldfish the other small cichlids), two small saltwater tanks (collection: a moray-eel, 2 tangs and two starfish) and a larger tank with some small sharks and rays.
    Extra fee: 5 dollar, for 50 dollar you can swim with the sharks.
    And yes, they count in euros, dollars and liras.
  5. Ned

    Ned Well-Known Member

    20 May 2009
    South Gloucestershire, UK
    I agree with Temp. I also think some bad zoos are worth a visit; in the past I have purposely visited some ropey zoos so I could get a balanced view of zoos and avoid seeing zoos through rose tinted galsses.
  6. zoogiraffe

    zoogiraffe Well-Known Member

    12 Sep 2007
    Middlewich,Cheshire U.K
    Over the years I have visited some very rough collections and not just in the UK,but I don't regret ever having visited them as atleast I have visited them,thankfully some of them are now closed,but then I have also visited some very good collections that are now closed.

    But I would never tell somebody not to visit a place however bad it was,as everyone should visit a place and make there own minds up about the place!
  7. gentle lemur

    gentle lemur Well-Known Member

    8 Sep 2007
    South Devon
    My perspective is a little different. I do not wish to visit a collection which will only depress me. I have done it often enough in the past and I regret supporting some poor collections in this way. I now need a positive reason to go to a zoo so that I can have a reasonable expectation of enjoying my visit.
    As zoogiraffe is more or less our snowleopard on this side of the Pond, I am very happy that he visits as many collections as he does, and I am interested in his views about them all. I am interested in all the other comments in ZooChat and I also like to check the Gallery before I decide whether to visit a collection. I do have a mental list of places that I will not revisit until I have seen evidence that they have improved: there are a couple of collections in the UK which seem to deserve another visit fairly soon - but it would be unfair to name them here until I have seen them for myself again, at which point I will certainly post my comments.

  8. snowleopard

    snowleopard Well-Known Member Premium Member

    1 Dec 2007
    Abbotsford, B.C., Canada
    I have found that there is a wide range of zoo enthusiasts on this forum. There are some folks who are very knowledgeable but in reality have not visited that many zoos. Others are young and have many zoo visits ahead of them in life. Then there are people like "zoogiraffe", Tim Brown, "Maguari" and many others that have all seen hundreds of zoos and will literally visit just about anywhere that has exotic animals for viewing.

    I have found that I enjoy touring some very poor American zoos simply because there are species that I'll rarely see elsewhere and every single zoo is unique. A poor zoo with rows of disappointing enclosures is one that I'll never go back to unless there are substantial improvements. In Canada I live 20 minutes from a zoo that has had a lot of controversy over the years (Greater Vancouver Zoo) and I have not visited in 4 years. Now that a few of the exhibits have been improved and some new species have been brought in I'm contemplating a visit in the future but time will tell if I really do bring myself to spend money at the facility.

    Of course I wish to visit as many zoos as possible to bring my lifetime numbers up but most of them I see once and never again. It would be very difficult to make a list of the zoos that should not be visited as there will always be people like myself who will give every facility at least one visit before passing judgement. You never know when an old zoo visit will come in handy. I've only ever been contacted by a journalist twice in my life, as in both cases a "zoo expert" was required for an article. Once was a couple of years ago when a Minneasota journalist chatted with me on the phone and I was quoted with my real name in a Minneapolis newspaper in relation to that zoo closing down its monorail.

    The second occasion was when a journalist from Alberta, Canada, needed some thoughts from a Canadian "zoo expert" on the notoriously awful GuZoo facility. In 2006 I had been within a mile of that infamous roadside zoo and I decided to skip it as I didn't want to give the owners my money. When the journalist called me up on the phone I instantly regretted the decision to skip the zoo as I blasted the establishment because photos of it showed horrendous conditions but since I had not physically toured the place the journalist wasn't interested in my opinion. I wish that I had gone around the zoo at that time and taken my usual allotment of photos as then I would have been able to help get the place shut down and the exotic animals relocated. The moral of the story is that I'll visit anywhere once..."I visit 'em so you don't have to!"