Chinese city steps up wild animal safeguards

Zhang Liuhao

SHANGHAI is working to provide better protection for wild animals, city government spokeswoman Jiao Yang told Shanghai Daily yesterday, noting that municipal officials ordered a halt to the “Animal Olympics” at the Shanghai Wild Animal Park early this month.

Following complaints about kangaroo boxing, bear bicycle racing and other events involving animal contestants, the city immediately sent officials to the Nanhui District park and ordered it to promptly “rectify the problems,” Jiao said.

The games, held every two years, began in late September and were originally scheduled to run until the end of this month. They drew widespread complaints this year from city residents and animal lovers around the world.

Following a city inspection early this month, the Shanghai Wild Animal Park adopted “prompt measures for rectification,” Jiao said.

The park shut down the games about three weeks ago, and it also halted its practice of allowing people to pose for photos with small animals.

Jiao said Shanghai has always paid close attention to the protection of wild animals.

Following national and city regulations, local authorities adopted a series of animal protective measures over recent years. The efforts included improvements in the monitoring and restoration of habitats for wild animals.

Jiao said the city has also carried out campaigns against wild animal breeding. Facilities that failed to meet regulations have been ordered to stop operation.

In addition, the city has boosted cooperation with non-governmental organizations to promote public awareness about the need to protect wild animals, she said.



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