TAKE ACTION FOR CAPTIVE WILD ANIMALS: GLOBAL

You should never underestimate your power to help captive wild animals in need. By voicing your concerns directly, you could make a real difference.

Below you will find suggestions on who you can contact to raise your concerns, plus links to their contact details. Scroll down for guidance on what you could say in your letters or emails.

 

  WHO TO CONTACT:

    AMBASSADOR OR HIGH COMMISSIONER 

UK residents can find details of the relevant country's Embassy or High Commission on the Foreign & Commonwealth Office website. The London Diplomatic List contains details of country representatives in London, the name of the Ambassador or High Commissioner, & their email/postal address.
If you do not live in the UK, you can find contact details of the relevant country’s Embassy or High Commission in your home country at www.embassy-worldwide.com

 TOURISM AUTHORITY OR TOURIST OFFICE

If you are a UK resident, contact details can be found on the website of The Association of National Tourist Offices & Representatives.

If you do not live in the UK, contact details for the tourism authority based in the country concerned can be found on the website of the World Tourism Organization.

     CAPTIVE FACILITY OR 'ATTRACTION'   

It is important that the zoo or captive animal 'attraction' hears directly from their concerned customers & international tourists.

Many places claim that they never receive any complaints about the treatment of their animals, so please make your concerns known.

 

 

MEMBER OF EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT (MEP)

If the country concerned is part of the European Union (EU), & you are an EU resident, write to your MEP.

You can find their contact details at: www.europarl.europa.eu/meps/en/map.html.

 TOUR OPERATOR, TRAVEL AGENT OR HOTEL
 

Reputable companies should be obliged to investigate your concerns involving any animals seen on an excursion or at a hotel or facility booked through or promoted by them.

This also reminds them that animal welfare should be an important issue on their agenda.

     NEWS & MEDIA OUTLETS   
 

Contact newspapers & online news sites to report your eyewitness concerns & encourage them to publish an associated story. 

Sending accompanying photos &/or videos of the animals involved may be helpful in evoking their potential interest in covering your story.

 

     NATIONAL & REGIONAL ZOO ASSOCIATIONS

Many countries or regions have specific zoo associations, claiming to offer the best standards of animal care & guidance to member zoos. If you have visited an association member zoo, raise your concerns.

WAZA (World Association of Zoos & Aquariums):  find a member zoo or national zoo association or contact WAZA directly.

EAZA (European Association of Zoos & Aquaria): find a member & their contact details.

BIAZA (British & Irish Association of Zoos & Aquariums): find a member & their contact details. 

         WRITE A REVIEW        
 

Online review sites, such as Trip Advisor, are a great source of information & useful for raising awareness of problems at captive facilities & locations around the world.

If possible, also post photos to support your review.

If the option exists, writing a review & providing constructive feedback on a captive facility's, 'attraction's' or hotel's website is also great at spreading the word.

 

         PUBLISHER OR AUTHOR                   

The publishing company or author of any magazine, brochure, guide or book that has recommended or promoted a captive animal facility or 'attraction'.

Perhaps you saw an advert or positive review in a publication, which lead to you visiting a location, but resulted in concerns for captive animals there. Or you might already have existing concerns following a past visit & can't believe it is being promoted in their publication. 

 

  WHAT TO WRITE:

The most effective emails or letters are usually short and concise. Around 300 words should be adequate to relay your comments and concerns. Be specific about why you are writing and what concerns you have. Did you visit the facility with your family or friends? Did you pay an entry fee or buy a ticket? If you did, you have the right to raise your concerns about the welfare of the animals you encountered. 

Please be polite and courteous. You are less likely to receive an answer if you rant or are rude. You want to be taken seriously by the people you are writing to.

POINTS TO INCLUDE:

  • The date of your visit.
  • Where you saw the animals, the name of the facility and its location.
  • What you personally witnessed, including what animals you saw or are concerned about.
  • Describe the conditions the wild animals were in or how the animals were treated. 
  • Explain if the animals were being made to perform tricks and what they were doing.
  • Describe your feelings at the time.
  • Ask direct questions that require an answer, such as:
     - Can you assure me that my concerns will be investigated?
     - Are you aware this activity or treatment is going on?
     - What are the laws concerning the welfare of animals in zoos, circus etc? 
  • If you have concerns about a zoo in the UK, you could ask the relevant Local Authoity to see a copy of the zoo’s most recent inspection report.
  • If you have images to support your concerns, include them with your letter or email.
  • Ask for a reply and give your contact details.
Please send Born Free copies of any replies you receive, either by email or to our UK office (marked FAO Captivity department).
 

For more specific guidance in relation to raising your concerns about captive animals in the United Kingdom, please visit: TAKE ACTION: CAPTIVE ANIMALS IN UK

UPDATE DIRECT TO YOUR INBOX

Sign up to get the latest Born Free news about our work and how you can help, delivered straight to your inbox.