Having Animals in Captivity Does More Good than Harm
Keeping animals in captivity is ethical. However, researchers claim that animals who are held in captivity are being harmed by their environment. Today the world is facing many changes such as rise in temperature and rising sea levels. In the bigger picture of the world today, captivity of different types of wild animals does more good than harm.
Some animals that reside in captivity are endangered species. Zoo keepers and researchers who work with these wild animals are devoted to caring for these species so that they don’t die off as a whole. In the wild they may not be able to fend for themselves on their own without help. Captive animals are provided with food to survive and the basic necessities to live. For example, different types of birds can’t survive in natural disasters. A such event happened in Puerto Rico in 1989 by Hurricane Hugo wiping a whole bird population to only thirteen birds. According to 8 Zoos Helping Animals Edge out of Extinction “Today, thanks to the efforts of zoo scientists at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago, captive-bred birds at two aviaries number over 200 — and reintroduction is underway. Some 60 wild and captive-born Puerto Rican parrots now live free.” Without the help of the research at the zoo who took the species in their hands, these birds would no longer exist on the earth today. If reintroduction works the population of the birds could be larger in the wild as time passes.
Today sea levels are rising and some animals natural habitats are being cut down, forcing animals to go into environments they are not suited for. According to Zoos through the Lens of the IUCN Red List: A Global Metapopulation Approach to Support Conservation Breeding Programs , researchers suggest that “conservation breeding programs (CBPs) may off the only feasible option to avoid the extinction of particular species until appropriate habitat can be found or restored.” During an animals time in captivity, they could be bred to produce more of that species under safe and conditions where there is the basics they need to survive and reproduce. If scientist reintroduced these animals at a higher rate, wild species population could rise out of extinction.
Although animals behaviors might change in captivity, such as some scientist are concerned, captivity does more overall good to the animals than harm. The captive animals don’t necessarily need to be put in zoos, they can reside in other places specifically for wild animals to help them safely grow and sustain their population.