Sunday, June 12, 2016

San Francisco Zoo UnSecure Barriers - Rhinos, Hippo, Bears & Chimps

I have posted a Series of Videos, showing the Barrier Situation at Code Red Animal Exhibits for Black Rhino, Nile Hippo, Polar Bear, Chimpanzees, One-Horned Rhino.

These Videos are not only for documentation purposes, but to Support a Petition I have planned, Calling the San Francisco Zoo to Action, to Secure the Barriers to these Animals Homes, by adding Floor to Ceiling Glass across entire length of Exhibits.

It is also Unacceptable that these Exhibits, have little to no Signage.  The Yellow Respect The Animals Sign, is too wordy to be useful.   Simple to the point Signs, need to be placed at least every Six Feet across Exhibit.  ... Until these Enclosures are Secure with Glass, these Signs need to be in place.

The Black Rhino is one Animal I have repeatedly been vocal about.  His Barrier is Abused Constantly.  My guess would be at least a dozen times a day.  That's a dozen times that this Innocent Animal dodges a Bullet a day.  It is my opinion that he is the most Vulnerable, because there is  No Secondary Barrier, the Wall into his Enclosure looks less than Six Feet tall and he can come right to it, even looking over the top of it.  You will see in the video, that there is No Secondary Barrier, and One Sign for the entire length of the Enclosure, which is well over Eighty Feet.   

The Hippo is another one I have been vocal about.  His Barrier is Abused Constantly as well.  The only difference is he has a Secondary Barrier, by Zoo Standards, but in my opinion will not stop anyone from entering his Enclosure, accidentially or voluntarily.  You will see that the wiring is primarily, if not exclusively designed only to keep him in.  There is only One Sign along this Barrier that spands over Sixty Feet.

The Polar Bear is another Hot Spot for Barrier Abuse.  As Vulnerable as the Black Rhino, as there are people constantly on or over this Barrier all the time, only difference is, there is a Moat and the time it might take for Ulu to get down there, could be the saving point for Staff to be able to call her in. That is not a given though, making this enclosure in the top three that need to be Secured by Floor to Ceiling Glass.

The exact lay-out is at the Grizzly Bears Grotto.  They are Vulnerable to same situations as at Polar Bears.  Although, not as often as for most of the Business Hours, the Girls are in the Gulch, which is Secure.

There was an incident in 2009, that had their lives on the line.  The Zoo didn't learn from that, and has continued to leave our Bears Vulnerable to date.  Please read my previous post for more details about that incident.

The Chimps Barriers have been of Issue for too long.   This enclosure is three Grotto style areas, with Moats, tall side walls and that's basically it.  Designed to keep the Chimps in, aside from the Roping, there is nothing keeping people out.  In the front of the Exhibit the Roping looks to range from about Six to Eight Feet from the edge of the Enclosure.  I have seen Kids cross the Rope Barrier many times, both while Parents are watching and while they aren't.  There is a viewing area off the Cafe Party Room, that has been breachable for years.  Please read my previous post from over two years ago. . The Exhibit side that borders the path along the Pachyderm Building is of extreme issue as the Enclosure edge is about Three feet from the Roping.  I think it being  tree-lined is why I haven't seen anyone hanging over this Barrier, but I have seen people cross it to get closer for photos.   This Enclosure is Rumored to be on the board for renovation, so I assume money won't be spent for a Glass Barrier (it hasn't even been spent to paint their house), but there needs to be a temporary fix to these Breaching Points, as well as additional Signage.

UPDATE:  I took the Videos posted during the week after the Cincinnati Tragedy.  Last week there were Barrier additions to the Chimp Exhibit.  There is now a Secondary Barrier across the front of the Exhibit.  A waist high fencing that runs across the front length of the Exhibit to the existing fencing that stems from the Cafe viewing area.  Whether it extends into the trees that pose a breachable point, I don't know.   This Barrier will keep out anyone crossing the Barrier, but not looking to actually enter the Exhibit.  It won't keep out anyone who's intent is to Enter the Exhibit.  There has also been added,  a Floor to Ceiling Bamboo fencing that runs along the side that parallels the Pachyderm Building.  This is a Secure Barrier.  They have added a viewing window, which I think is a good idea, as this was a very good place to view the Chimps.

The Asian One-Horned Rhino is a very curious set-up.  For being a Code Red Animal, he is out there front and center, with no Secure Barrier at all.  The Barrier that is there, will keep him In, but it in no way will keep anyone who wants in to easily access him.  This makes him high on the list of Vulnerable Animals.  The 100+ Foot Exhibit has a waist high Barrier of a Wooden Fence with heavy mesh.  Then there is a Flower Bed that stretches vertically about Eight- Ten Feet til it reaches the Floor to Ceiling Wire Barrier that keeps him in.  The initial Wood Barrier is Abused constantly and I've seen it a couple times even in front of Keepers.  First, I do think if anyone dropped their Kid over the Barrier,  because of the diastance to the Enclosure, unless the Kid was really a shit and not listening, it wouldn't reach the Animal.  BUT if the Kid was a shit, or it was someone who intentionally wanted to gain entry, neither of these Barriers would prevent that.  Also, in addition to the Respect the Animals useless signage, there are only two Do Not Cross Barrier type Signs, for the entire 80 Feet of the East portion of the Exhibit and Zero for the 24 Feet of the West side.                            

Added:  Will post more detailed look at Gorillas soon.  Someone asked me about the Barriers there. I didn't originally include them, as I don't think they are vulnerable to accidental breaches, so they weren't at the front of my mind when writing this.  The Gorilla viewing platforms that were built as open air, with just a singular Cement Barrier over looking the Enclosure.  A few years ago three or four of the five platforms were glassed in.  I haven't seen any Barrier Abuse since then. The other (s) with fencing indicating they were closed.  I have always thought that to be curious.  Those areas along with some landscaped areas are vulnerable to anyone wanting to enter the enclosure voluntarily.  One area may still be of issue.  Will take a closer look.

There are many other Exhibits that are victims to Barrier Abuse.  Patas Monkeys are one, I see too often.  The poor Meerkats and Prairie Dogs have people reaching into their homes.  Sea Lions, Kids Standing/Sitting on Rails.  Haven't seen much at Lemurs, but that one drops right in.  No signage about not being on Rails.  Pecarries, I see people sitting on that Barrier.  No Signs not to.  Puente, people hanging into that place where Anteater and Capybara are spending the most time.  Kangaroos. I'm sure there are others, but I'm getting overwhelmed.  I think I've gotten my point across.  I feel there needs to be a Message put forth that Informs Visitors that NO Barriers should be Sat On, Stood On, or Crossed.   Regardless of whether it is considered a Dangerous Animal or Not.  Having a Universal Message instills the basics that those acts are prohibited.   I personally feel like the Barriers are the Windows to the Animals Home.  How would you like it if a Stranger at any random time, hung over into your Home?

Please see my next Post (later today) that outlines my Petition to Keep Our Zoo Friends Safe.  Thank You.


Sunday, June 5, 2016

Are San Francisco Zoo Code Red Animal Barriers Safe For the Animals?

When I went to the Zoo on Friday, my purpose was to again see if there had been any new deterrents, anyone misbehaving, and to take some photos for my blog.  I went with a purpose, rooted in Animal Safety.  When I walked through Entry Village I saw Director Tanya Peterson, and other Management Staff, sitting at a table outside the Gift Shop, having a laugh.  It appeared to be a festive meet-up, and that pissed me off.  While they sat there sharing some cheer, I had the safety of the Animals on my mind.  Minutes later I was witnessing someone hanging their kid over the Barrier at the Hippo exhibit.

I gathered photos and video of most of the Code Red Animal Barriers.  As mentioned in other posts, before the Tragedy at the Cincinnati Zoo, I had blogged about Barrier Abuse (formerly I called it Breaching) many, many times.  I blogged, I complained in person, no changes, with the exception of Giant Anteater across from Lion House.  His home only got a decent Barrier last fall before the AZA came for their Accreditation Inspection.  While I don't think that the Anteater is a Code Red Animal, he could probably do some damage with those claws.  My concern about his enclosure was how Visitors laid and failed across his Barrier like it was their personal couch.  It was Disrespectful and Rude.  They can't do that now, but anyone can surely jump it if they want.  Is that considered Safe for the Animal?  Which is what we must question at every Exhibit.

Zoo Exhibit Barriers, while "acting" as walled Security designed not only to keep Animals in, but to establish a Visitor side and Animal side,  something too many Visitors forget, or more often disregard.   I liken the intrusiveness of Barrier Abuse to that of someone hanging in the window of your house while you're there watching t.v.  You are just in your home, your Safe place, going about your life and someone invades your personal space.   Tables turned, no one would like it, yet those same People will do it to the Animals without a thought.  I know this because when asked,  Why would you do that?  Noting the example, People have told me they wouldn't like it.

So, let's talk about Barrier Abuse.  This consists of several offenses.  ranging from Banging on the Glass, to actually Crossing the Barriers. Tapping, Rapping, Knocking, Hitting, Banging, Glass. Hanging On, Over, Laying Across, Standing On, Railings or Fencing.  All of it Barrier Abuse.  The Zoo has few signs, to discourage it.  I'll post below.

These are posted a fair amount, but lets face it, they are too wordy and not many People are going to read them.  Necessary, but there is a serious need for additional signage.

These are decent, but not enough of them and few in the right places.  This one at Anteater.  None at Bears. None at Black Rhinos.  None at Hippo.  None at Chimps.  In fact there is Not One Sign at Chimps in reference exclusively to not crossing the Barriers.  Only the one above and its off to the side.  BUT there is one across the path from Chimps, so you don't go on chipped wood. WTH?  Its the same show of priority that having huge signs for Only Authorized Personnel versus the size of Life Saving Signs is. ..... Also I don't like that they only use the word Behind, as that implies the only offense is if you actually go into an Enclosure.

This is one of the most recent efforts in Signage.  It too only indicates that actually going into the Exhibits is forbidden.  I'm going by memory, but I think its only at three Exhibits.  Black Rhinos, Hippo and Bears.

This one I've only seen at the Polar Bear.  It was on two at Black Rhino, but they got weathered and were finally removed right before AZA came for inspection.  Its actually not bad, but its about six inches long and is in one place on a Barrier that is over 150 feet in length.  There are three other signs, but they are spaced too far apart.  It also only covers the Standing Offense.  Make it bigger, add "Or Over", put it every six ft and we might be getting somewhere with the signage issue.  If they aren't going to put solid Barriers, there needs to at least be decent signage.

This one is just plain ridiculous.  It was weathered and has now been replaced.  Why?  I don't know. Again too wordy and only indicates the law if you actually cross the Barrier. Does that mean if someone accidentally falls in Polar Bear Exhibit, Ulu's life is Safe? ...   Again also useless in size, it appears only in two places I think, Polar Bear and One Horned Rhino.

Frankly I expect More. I've been saying this for years.  Yes, there's always the argument that People don't read Signs. Well then, Why have any at all?  So, that's a stupid argument.  At least its Doing Something.  Maybe it will deter some and the odds of tragedy go down.  Again, its doing something. Its Sending a Message.   There just needs to be More.  I've made suggestions in the past.  Sandwich Boards in path.  Text painted on Path and Buildings about Behavior and Respect.  Painting the Barriers Red. Behavior Announcement at Entry, in Cafe.  All decent and doable suggestions in my opinion. Nothing.  Here's a new one, stenciling the words, Stay Off Barrier, continuously across the Barriers? And Signs saying just that, where stenciling isn't doable.  Three simple words.  ... Additionally all Windows Need some simple words.  Do Not Knock on Glass.  

That about covers the Signage issue.  Getting the Message out.  I have made a few Videos that show some of the Exhibit Barriers.  They will be posted soon, in a separate post.  No time now to piece clips together and since I'm near done with writing this, I want to post it.

Its curious to me all the attention paid to building Exhibits to Keep Animals In, which doesn't lend to keeping People Out.  If Exhibits were built to Keep People Out, wouldn't that also lend to Keeping Animals In?   

It is my opinion that the Black Rhinos is the most Vulnerable and needs a secondary Barrier of Solid Glass.  It is the most Abused Barrier, and the distance to the edge is shortest at Black Rhinos, with the Animal able to be at the drop line.  Black Rhinos, Hippo and Polar Bear are the three Code Red Exhibits that Visitors hang their Kids over the most.   They are the ones that are most dangerous because a Kid can fall in at any time. While Parents may think they have a good grip on the Kid, accidents have been proven to happen. Parents can lose their grip to any number of things, including a wiggling Kid and someone accidentally bumping into them from behind.  

Someone Dropping their Kid into an Exhibit, is more likely, but obviously there are other circumstances.  In the most recent Tragedy at the Cincinnati Zoo, the Parent wasn't even watching their Kid.  Then there's the People who Intentionally enter an Exhibit, for whatever reason.   

Should Innocent Animals Lose their Lives for any of these reason's?  I say No.  None of these are "accidents" in my opinion.  All preventable.  People need to watch their Kids and other members of their Group.  People need to Stay the Hell off the Barriers.  People need to stay the Hell out of the Exhibits.  Note to those who enter voluntarily, tell someone as you're going in so an Animal isn't Murdered because you want to Commit Suicide or try to Pet it.  

That all said, what does our San Francisco Zoo plan to do to protect these Animals in their Homes? Will there be the addition of Glass at Code Red Animals? From what I've seen a full week later nothing.   If there was even talk of doing something, why no Temporary Signs to Remind Visitors to Respect Barriers?  

I was once told in reference to Signs, "they cost money".  Is that the problem?  Cause I have to believe there is someone on staff in that place that thinks there should be more Signs.  Is the cost of paper, ink and laminating too much?  I don't want to hear them crying poor.  Like all the other things that are In Need and don't get done, why is that?  Is it on the Director and her Fundraising capabilities?  Is it on the Donors for not caring to fund In Need Animals?  I have wondered if the Director goes before Donors and says point blank,  look, while we'd love to have new Animals , new Exhibits, the reality is this is what we need?  I highly doubt it, or if she does, shame on Donors who are only concerned with funding their own preferences while In Need Animals get shafted and exhibits fail to be updated. One Word:  Chimps.

San Francisco Zoo Takes no Steps to Ensure Safety of Animals After Gorilla Tragedy at Cincinnati Zoo

I visited the Zoo three days after the Gorilla Tragedy at the Cincinnati Zoo and found nothing different.  There was no extra Security.  There was no extra signage.  Visitors still hanging their kids over the Barriers.  I wasn't surprised, but really bothered that I'm always disappointed in the lack of effort in so many ways.  

Gorilla Harambe losing his life, is a big deal.  The circumstances surrounding his death are serious. The lack of attention to how that could easily hit home, is puzzling and frustrating.  As well as being disgusting, shameful and sad.

If I was in charge, at the very least, I would have had additional Security. Signage on sandwich boards, printed and laminated attached to railings, reminding People to be Respectful of the Barriers. Docents posted through out day at all Code Red Animal exhibits that are vulnerable to trespassing (Black Rhino, Hippo, Bears, Chimps).  In my opinion its irresponsible to not have taken steps to deter similar behavior.   Granted the Kid in Cincinnati was not dropped into the exhibit, but rather fell, really makes no difference.  Both are negligent actions, both end with the Animal losing its life.

I just don't understand.  A whole lot of People working there, and no one thought to take any action in favor of deterring misbehavior to prevent Tragedy?  Again no real surprise. I've complained about it in person and in writing for years.  That's part of what's scary.  

So yeah.  I spent an hour at the Hottest Spot in the Zoo, the Black Rhinos.  If you haven't read my other posts, please do, I link to two videos showing offenders here.  In that hour, I saw Security breeze by on their bike, never looking at exhibits.  What's the point, if not even going to try to ID misbehavior?  No Docents, No Staff.  What I did see was a Visitor with her Kid over the Barrier.  I wasn't surprised, but was very disappointed.  Harambe lost his life Three Days before and this Woman thinks nothing to hang her Kid over a Rhino Barrier.   This Barrier neighbors the Hippo, who was sleeping right below the Kid about four feet away.

Me: Excuse me, Lady with your Kid on the Barrier.  Why would you do that?  Did you see the News about the Gorilla that lost its life because a Kid fell in the enclosure?  
Offender: Yes.
Me: Then why would you hang your Kid over a Barrier with a Hippo right there?  
Offender: Ok.
Me:Wonder if you drop your Kid?  That Hippo will die.  Use better judgement.

Then again yesterday.  

Me: Excuse me, You're not supposed to have your Kid over the Barrier.  Why would you do that after that Gorilla got killed last weekend? 
Offender: Don't start with me.
Me: I'm just asking you a question.  I'm not being argumentative.  I'm just asking you a question.
Offender: None of your business.
Me: Oh, none of my business?  So what happens if she falls in and that Hippo loses its life?
Offender's Granny: We're not like those other People, we're watching...
Offender: Don't start with me.  

In both instances the Parent removed the Kid when I said Excuse me.  They had no idea at that point what I was going to say, yet they retreated because they know they are wrong!

This is the Mentality of the Zoo Visitors who Abuse the Barriers and Terrorize the Animals with other bad behavior.   They think they can do whatever the hell they want.  It may be hanging over or standing on the barrier,  heckling the Animals, throwing things at them, hitting the glass of their home, or some other offense.   ... What is wrong with People?  All of these actions are Disgusting.  The Barrier Abuse can get Animals Killed, and the other stuff is not only Bullying, but Evil Minded.
.... One day last week, within minutes of each other I witnessed two different groups of Visitors hitting the glass of the Komodo Dragon, while the video plays in the background about him recuperating from a medical procedure.  Same day a group was hitting the window in front of the eight week old Anteater.  Seriously, What is wrong with People?  

Many years ago I wrote that all the exhibits with glass should have Do Not Hit, Tap, Rap, Bang, ect, noted on them.  Some time after, the ARC window where the Alligator and Turtles are viewable, has such a sign.  I thought, finally!  Not long after it was gone.  I was told Management made them take it down.  ... Last year I saw  similar words across the Anteater viewing window.  That is now gone.   No idea why, as I just noticed that day when People were hitting it.

Additionally I have written and repeated suggestions for more deterrents and nothing more has been done.  The signage that they do have is either not enough, too small in size, too much wording.  Why is it such a challenge for them to get the message out, that Barrier Abuse and other Acts of Misbehavior won't be tolerated?

Is the San Francisco Zoo Afraid to Offend People or Do They Just Not Care?

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Will The San Francisco Zoo Secure Rhino Barrier or Wait For Tragedy?

I'm tired of complaining and blogging about this issue.  Its time for the San Francisco Zoo to Protect this Animal.

As noted in my last two previous posts, I have written about this issue for many years.  Its been exhausting, frustrating and painful to continually document this issue every visit, but I do.    I have been absent on posting for too many months, but the issue is never away from me.  That said, how much more do I have to write, for the threat to our Male Black Rhino Belozi to be taken seriously?

What happened in Cincinnati can easily happen here.  I see this parental negligence on every visit. Please search this blog for "barriers" to read past posts, learn the extent and see photos.

In case you haven't seen my video that shows the abuse to the barriers at Black Rhinos, please view.

From what I have been told, San Francisco Zoo Security allegedly has Shoot to Kill orders on any Animal, in any situation they think is Endangering a Human.  SFZoo allegedly no longer has a Tranq Team.  Allegedly that Team was discarded in favor of letting Security handle all incidents.  I don't know how many Zoos have armed Security Guards, but allegedly the previous Security company was let go, after our Director Tanya Peterson hired these armed Guards to ensure no Keepers "crashed" the Annual ZooFest.

So, any one of the multiple Visitors that hang their kids over the barriers, especially at Black Rhinos, is putting the life of Belozi in Danger.

The only viable solution is to make the exhibit breach free. There needs to be glass that runs the entire length of the exhibit.  At no point in the barrier should anyone for any reason be able to enter the exhibit from the Visitor side.

Black Rhinos is just a start.  Every Animal enclosure should be secure in this way, but that sadly, I realize is a Fantasy. That said, every Code Red Animal exhibit needs to be glassed in.  Polar Bear. Grizzly Bear.  The two viewing platforms at Gorillas.  Chimpanzees.  Asian Rhino, at the very least it needs a secondary barrier.  People are allowed to hang their kids over that barrier, even when Keepers are present.

Thankfully the second most breached exhibit, the home of the Giant Anteater, Angelo, has finally got a barrier, while not breach proof, does not allow for Visitors to sprawl out and flail about on.  That took three years of blogging about, and only when their AZA Accreditation inspection was upon them, did they do something there.  That inspection got a few other minor fixes, but why should the Animals safety and comfort, wait for threat of inspection?  

The only one that was ever taken seriously was Mandrills. After blogging about it for some time, glass was put up there.  Thankful for that, although there is a break in flow of the glass barrier, that can be breached with effort.  But at least the idiots who hang over the rail can't just fall in now.

The little efforts over the years the Zoo has made to put forth the message that, abuse of the barriers is not tolerated, has done near nothing.  I don't see a reduced amount of violators, in fact I see an increase.  I will write another post with suggestions in detail, because even Non-Code Red Animals need protection from Visitors.  

In addition to Visitors hanging into enclosures, they try to feed the Animals, throw things in the enclosures AND at them!  Animal safety needs to become a priority.  By allowing these misbehavior's, the Zoo sends a message that this is acceptable.  

I have a blog post in the works about this, but will add it here as a final note.  The recent renovation of two Bear Grottos for the upcoming Wolf Exhibit, has the barrier lined in glass.  SO, when the Zoo wants to do something, they do it.  

If no glass shows up along Black Rhinos, it will be because the Zoo doesn't want to do it.  Doesn't want to protect Belozi.

Justice for Harambe? Will There Be Changes to Cincinnati Zoo Gorilla Exhibit?

Will Zoos across America, take a hard look at the breach points in enclosures that house Code Red Animals? Sadly I'm going to go with, probably not, but I hope I'm wrong.

I had less than four hours sleep last night.  Stayed up til early this morning, reading through comments on the Cincinnati Facebook Page, responses to News articles, Twitter, Zoo Chat, Reddit.  I went to bed feeling like I was going to vomit, and woke up with tears.  As I wrote in my previous post, this is a subject that hits home.  I am frustrated that there will most likely be no change, both at home, the SFZoo and at other Zoos, like Cincinnati, the place Harambe called home. Everyone should be safe in their home.

The consensus on Social Network forums seems to put the order of responsibility as Parents, Zoo, ... the Animal was not the cause of incident.  That said, what do we do when the rule apparently is, that Humans are a Priority, over all Non-Human Beings, in any circumstance?  Is this right?  This concept escapes me, but that's a different debate.  I firmly believe that no life is worth more than another  just because of Species.  Life fate is based on its value as a responsible and decent being. You dangle your kid over a Rhino enclosure and yell, "here Rhino"  in my eyes you and your kid are of less value than the Rhino.

As a Society of those who believe Humans should take responsibility in their actions, where does that leave us in this battle in a World filled with Humans with no sense or sense of entitlement putting themselves above rule and doing whatever they want to?  Why should anyone, Human or Non-Human, have to pay for others misplaced actions?  

The reality is, Humans should have more sense. I'm personally tired of seeing people get passes for behavior that is offensive in whatever way.  In the case of anyone breaching a barrier to an Animal Exhibit in a Zoo, that is offensive to the respect of the Animal, and to the Trespassing Law.  At least in California.   So, what to do?  

The battle between Human error and Non-Human's paying the price with their life, is upsetting and frustrating. 

Here are some of the questions being batted about on Social Media:

Where was the Mother?
Why wasn't the Kid being watched?
How did the Kid get to an opening in the Exhibit?
Should the Zoo have better barriers?

I expressed my experience in my previous post, and I'm sure anyone who's gone to a Zoo can agree, Visitors abuse the Rules.  I'm not the only one to see people on and over barriers.  I'm not the only one to see people not paying attention to children in their care. ....  I've also expressed barrier issue at San Francisco Zoo.  I'm sure there are same style exhibits all over.  So, what can be done?  How can we make the Zoos Safe for the Animals who live there?  

While I think when you walk through the gates of a Zoo, you assume the responsibility to Behave Responsibly.  Barring an Animal Escape, you are responsible for your safety. Same as if you were at an Amusement Park and the roller coaster went off the rails, that's the problem of the Park.  If you jump out of the roller coaster, that's your problem.  The Zoos responsibility should be to the Animals in its care.  To me, it is backward to think in any other way in the case of exhibit entry. The Zoo is basically the "Parent" of the captive Animal.  That is who they should be responsible for. while many I'm finding might agree, there are many who don't.  So, what do we do? 

There have been several instances near exactly like this in past years.  We tend to only hear about those involving Code Red Animals, but there are too many other instances of barrier abuse (laying, standing on, hanging over) that go undocumented.  The negligence by Zoos to bring this behavior issue to light, and put forth repercussions,  lends to tragedies like yesterdays.  If more Zoos took a stand against these pre-cursor situations, and sent messages that this behavior is not acceptable, there might be less misbehavior and no tragedies.

Some of the incidents have been:

2009- San Francisco Zoo- Man entered Grizzly Bear enclosure.  Bears didn't engage and were safely brought inside.

2012 Pittsburgh Zoo- Mother held kid on railing for better view, lost grip and dropped him into Wild Dog exhibit.  Dog shot dead.

2013- San Francisco Zoo- Man runs through exhibit to by pass paying Admission.

2014- Arkansas Zoo- Child Fell into Jaguar Exhibit while Father leaned over railing to take a photo.

2015 Cleveland Metroparks Zoo- Toddler "fell into Cheetah exhibit after his parents reportedly held him over the railing."  ... In a surprising turn of events CMZ sued the Parents for Child Endangerment.  I haven't heard anything more about the outcome if any to this case.

2015 Omaha Zoo- Woman bitten while trying to Pet Tiger.

2016 Chile Zoo- Man enters Lion Exhibit on suicide mission.  Two Lions shot dead.

It Amazes me that people haven't learned from these incidents.  With the internet in our literal hands these days, there is no reason to not know better.  .. There is also the consideration, when its not an accident, like the Suicide guy.  This guy wants to die, yet two Lions lose their lives instead?  How does any of this make sense?  Yes, ... How does anyone know the factors?  Wonder if we did know? Wonder if known Criminals entered, would they too be saved because they are Human?  So here we are, still at Humans above Animals, regardless.  How do we fix this situation?  Is it to be left solely on the Zoos to make all exhibits entry free? That would be ideal, but I don't see it happening.  Zoos do not seem to want to make any adjustment to their exhibit visions based on dictation of Society misbehavior, unless of course tragedy strikes.  Why do we have to wait for that?  How many Animals have to die?

It seems that each Zoo reacts to their own tragedy.  San Francisco reacted to the Tiger incident by constructing glass and mesh barriers across the entire Big Cat area, five enclosures.  That incident was different than this in the way that Tatiana left the enclosure.  Not different in that she was the victim. Changes were made only because a Human died.  There were no changes to the Bear Grotto barriers after the Man entered the Grizzlies. 

How will Cincinati Zoo react to this barrier breach?  Will there be changes?  

If there is going to be an across the board, Shoot to Kill, Humans first protocol, Cincinnati Zoo and all other Zoos should examine all Exhibits, BUT especially those that house Code Red Animals, Apes, Big Cats, Bears, Rhinos, ect.  and make sure the barriers can not be breached from the public side.  If they aren't going to protect the Animals from the Public with any other actions or rules, they need to protect them by keeping them in a protected environment.

Will Cincinnati Zoo and other Zoos with vulnerable barriers step up and protect the Animals in their Care?


Please Sign and Share this Petition to bring about Harambe's Law.  Don't let his death be for nothing. Help other Animals by supporting the idea that Humans should be held responsible in some way for the actions of their misbehavior.

This is not my Petition but one I support.  Thank you.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

News Flash: Ohio Zoo Kills After Kid Falls In... How Long Before This Happens In San Francisco?

I am Heartbroken, Angry and Disgusted by this News just coming out of Ohio.  This Animal should not have lost his life for acting on instinct.  RIP Harambe.

One article:  

I have not written a blog post in seven months.  Every day since my last one, I have thought about it, every weekend I sit down to, and all the emotional drain of Zoo related issues take over and nothing comes to form.  What I do get is a constant stream of ranting about things that circle in my mind.  Not having all those thoughts down in posts in chronological order as I've tried in the past, really weighs on me.  Unfortunately, I am the only one, who cares enough to document the issues at the San Francisco Zoo.  For that reason, I feel a responsibility to the Animals.  I am attached to them in ways some might not understand, and not putting forth what happens there makes me feel like I'm letting them down.

After losing Shastyuh (last post, still not written), I just couldn't move forward.  That doesn't mean I don't make daily notes, as I keep close tabs on the Zoo regardless of whether I am posting.  I visit the Zoo at the least, once a week, often more.  There are endless issues to post about, and while I sometimes feel like I'm complaining, the reality is, these are things that I shouldn't even have to complain about.  Too many things that are amiss there, or even a Miss, that just shouldn't be.  Often small things, that you would think are obvious rights, that they just get wrong.  Since I haven't kept up with documenting everything, I have recently thought I need to shorten my list of issues and concentrate on the most important ones.  

One of those most important issues is the way the Zoo allows Visitors to quote myself in precious posts "run wild" through the Zoo.  I realize the Zoo is a Park, but its also a controlled environment where Animals live.  That said, there should be some sort of behavior guidance to those who enter.  I have made countless suggestions, most have fallen on deaf ears.  Some have come to fruition, but not as I had envisioned.  ... Please search "barrier" on this blog, for other posts I've done.

The incident today at the Cincinnati Zoo that cost Harambe Gorilla his life, is so tragic, and it can easily happen at our San Francisco Zoo.  

My opinion is not the popular one.  That's fine.  That's the beauty of Free Speech.  I'm Honest and Secure in my opinions.  I don't claim to be a Humanitarian.  That may sound awful, but in this day when there is so much violence against Animals, my soul has been damaged.  I make no apologies for my position.  That said, I am also not alone in my opinion.

Over the years that I have been a more frequent Visitor to the Zoo, I have been disgusted by the behavior I see from other Visitors towards the Animals. I often wonder why People even come to Zoos.  It is just something to do?  Do they think they are Animal lovers, but come to the Zoo to only torment, tease and belittle?  Some of it just rude, but all of it disrespectful.  I indeed make the call to Security whose number I have on my phone, every time I see misbehavior.  Reaching back in time, if the Visitor who saw the Lions being harassed on Christmas Day 2007 had made a call or found someone on Staff, Tatiana Tiger would not have lost her life because of Delinquents.

I haven't liked what each Holiday season, the Tatiana event was brought up in the News, but over the past year there have been several incidents at Zoos, so maybe it needs to, to remind People how to behave.  That said, there are still some that don't get the message and Animals lose their lives.  That Tatiana incident was a bit different, in that she left the enclosure, but the bottom line was still the same, her fate was sealed by Human misbehavior.  Unknown at the time to Staff and Authorities, that these Delinquents were to blame, the actions that led to her death, in that moment were probably the only choice.  At the time I didn't think that, but since then I've learned about the time it takes for tranquilizers to take affect.  I still wish things would have gone differently and  I think they could have, had better precautions been taken, but that's in hindsight.  I still would have gone the next day and stood in front of that exhibit and not felt a threat.   Tigers have been able to escape those enclosures for years.  This only happened because of Humans terrorizing her into a frenzy.  That said, our SFZoo hasn't learned anything since.

As I said, I have written many times about Barrier Breaching.  I witness it on every visit.  I complain endlessly.  Still nothing gets done to keep the Animals safe.  Sure there have been signs posted, mostly after I've written about it, but even then, the Zoo falls short in my opinion in proper wording, sizing and placement of these signs.  They also fall short on proper staffing of Security.  Most days, there are two Guards and one is patrolling the parking lot.  This is not a guarded presence.

Over the years, this has been how I feel.  I walk through the gates and beside me other Visitors are allowed to run wild through the Zoo with no guidelines.  Sure a couple years ago the Zoo posted a large sign on the side of the Gift shop at the entrance.  In my opinion this sign is to cover their ass more than put forth any rules of behavior.  If they truly wanted to establish rules for entry, they would be in eye's view, not to the side where most don't look.  I have never seen anyone stop and read that sign.  BUT at the gate house where tickets are presented, there is a huge over head banner that pimps out the next event.  In my opinion the Zoo only cares about grabbing the green, not protecting the Animals who live there.

I have suggested signs at the gate house.  I've suggested video at gate house and cafe. I've suggested rules on the paths and buildings. I've suggested sandwich board signs along paths.  Something that I've seen at Oakland Zoo.  I've suggested painting all the barriers Red.  I've suggested holding entry to every ten minutes and having the gate house employee talk about behavior.  Shit the Zoo installed these awful speakers at some exhibits, why not one at the gate house with a welcome message and guideline rules?   Why? because they have proven not to care about the behavior of the Visitors, in favor of not offending anyone.  In my opinion, anyone who gets offended, is not the type of person you want around Animals.

Visitors are out of control.  There are Humans acting the fool all over the place.  Most are the Adults. They yell at the Animals.  Bang on the glass with their Hands, Feet and Strollers.  Throw stuff into exhibits.  Try and pull Feathers from Peacocks.  Feed the Animals.  At the Farm they even sit on the poor Dwarf Goats.  Parents allow their kids to basically terrorize the place.  They yell and scream all over.  I get they are kids, but there should be some control when in establishments, especially where Animals live and can't escape the sights and sounds. They chase the Seagulls and Peacocks, which in my opinion is bullying.  Would they like the tables turned?  Hell no, but oh well they are just Animals.   Parents don't control their kids, most of the time they are on their phones and not even watching kids.  They think the Zoo and its confined illusion is some sort of babysitter.  Most every incident at other Zoos in recent times, has been some Parent losing control of their kid and dropping them into an exhibit.  .. I have posts on these incidents, you can search them.

Some might say, this is people just being people.  That's fine then.  Should Animals lose their life for the elitist attitude of people thinking they can just do whatever they want?  Its the little things like having no consideration and respect for your surroundings or others, that leads to these incidents.

In my fantasy, Zoos would band together and put the Animals in their care as the Priority, over Human misbehavior.  Except for an escape, any situation that ends up with a Visitor in an exhibit, is because of their own behavior, whether sinister or stupid.   That said, my Zoo would have signs that read, "If you end up in an Animal Enclosure, we will make every effort to extract you, BUT, Not at the expense of the Animals Life.  Act with Caution and Respect." 

Zoos are in a place where they want to give the Visitor the most Natural experience, therefore there are mostly open air exhibits.  Sadly, while that should be a wonderful thing of today, the present day of our Society has proven that isn't what's safe for the Animals.  I think all the Animals should be behind a glass barrier.  That puts an end to all of this.  Humans can keeping doing whatever the hell they want, whether intentional bad behavior or stupidity, and at least the Animals are Safe.  I have come up against photographers that don't like this idea.  To that I have to say, what's more important, taking a photo or the Animals life?    This is not to offend those I know, but its sorta like the Palm Oil situation.  Is stuffing your face with your favorite cookie worth the Animal who lost its life to make that cookie?   

One Animal who is not safe at the San Francisco Zoo is our Precious Belozi.  Everyday this Being is subjected to trespassing.  There is a constant stream of Visitors Breaching the Barrier of his home. They climb, hang, stand, dangle over, all these actions put his life in danger. If someone falls in, BANG he takes a Bullet.   Every time I get an article through my Google Alert like the one today, I hold my breath and pray its not Belozi.

I made this Video last November.  A time when once again I attempted to update my blog.  I never got to that place, so never networked it.  Interesting though, someone gave it a thumbs down.  What kind of person are you to thumbs down something that shows an Animal is in danger?  Please take a moment to view how vulnerable Belozi is.

I started another blog and Facebook Page under the name,  San Francisco Zoo UnCensored. I wanted to write a lead in to that and info about that before resuming posting, but I had to make this post today.  Note that THIS blog, iamnotananteater will remain my main blog for posts.  I will use the new forums to attract new and hopefully more attention to the issues at the San Francisco Zoo.  The alerts there will redirect to this blog.  If you are on Facebook please like the page, as I hope there will be comments posted there.  If you aren't on FB or prefer to post Anonymously, please continue to post comments to this blog and I will copy them to the FB group comments.  Thank you.

If anything you read moves you,
Please Contact the SFZoo Director 
Tanya Peterson

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

RIP Shastyuh - A Respectful Goodbye

Coming Soon! - I Hope ;)

If anything you read moves you,
Please contact the SFZoo Director
Tanya Peterson

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