Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Is being born in captivity a conservation victory?

25 February 2016

Categories: Homepage News, Zoo Check Campaign News, Primates Campaign News

It has become almost customary for zoos to claim some sort of conservation victory whenever animals are born in captivity. In the case of the recent birth of an infant gorilla by caesarean section at Bristol Zoo, the sad reality is that this infant female looks set to spend her early months being hand-raised before spending the rest of her life in captivity. And all the while, almost all wild gorilla populations continue to decline in the face of overwhelming habitat loss, poaching and disease. 

Bristol Zoo spent £1m on their new gorilla enclosure in 2014 – just think what that sum could do for genuine gorilla conservation. It is a sad irony that something as beautiful as the birth of a great ape is, in reality, so tragic when one considers the rest of the infant's life and how funds spent on keeping gorillas in Bristol could instead go towards protecting these animals in the wild. 

Although many organisations have been striving to protect great apes and monkeys - many species are still in decline.  That is why Born Free remains committed to supporting conservation action, trade restrictions and law enforcement to help stem this tide. If you’d like to support our ongoing conservation work with primates click here. 

Ian Redmond OBE - Wildlife Consultant for Born Free Foundation, was interviewed yesterday by 5 Live and BBC World Service regarding the gorilla birth at Bristol Zoo. Listen to 5 Live here (The interview starts at 49:41) and listen to BBC World Service here (The interview starts at 47:54). 

Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906

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