If it weren't for the fact that the poor polar bear was in great distress, I would give this zoo a higher rating. However, the plight of the polar bear, who obviously needs an upgraded enclosure, was very sad. He was pacing a few steps forward, then backward, then forward, and repeating this over and over for HOURS! We visited at the beginning of our visit, several more times throughout, and again at the end of our visit... and he was pacing the entire time! It was quite disturbing to watch, and I overheard other visitors commenting on his lack of space and freedom.
When I called the person in charge of customer relations at the zoo to express my concern, she indicated that they were using behavior modification to try to get the polar bear to "act" differently. In other words, they withheld his treats and toys when he paced… and only gave them to him when he was not pacing. Goodness… wouldn't it be more humane to give him a better enclosure?
We also observed the leopard pacing back and forth in distress, along with a few other animals doing the same.
Other side notes: 1)There were great play areas for children with seating areas for adults to rest, 2)The dining areas were filthy, with condiments not properly replenished.
Overall this is a beautiful zoo, and some of the enclosures are spacious and better than I've seen at other zoos. However, I can't give this zoo a higher rating because it is quite disturbing to witness animals in distress.
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