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“The Saddest Polar Bear In The World” Lives Behind Glass In A Shopping Mall In China

Polar Bear
This picture taken on July 24, 2016 shows visitors taking photos of a polar bear inside its enclosure at the Grandview Mall Aquarium in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou. A Chinese aquarium holding a forlorn-looking polar bear named Pizza said on September 20 it has "no need" for foreign interference, after activists offered to move the animal to a British zoo. / AFP / - (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)

Pizza, “the saddest polar bear in the world,” is said to have at least a short break from the “showcase” in which he lives in the Grandview shopping center in Guangzhou, southern China.

This is followed by a worldwide outcry, with one petition and one million signatures, and the joint efforts of 50 animal rights organizations in China.

This step is welcome news for all people concerned about the welfare of animals in general and the welfare of pizza in particular. Pizza showed what ethologists call “stereotypical behavior” – going back and forth, “shaking his head from side to side and sniffing and pawing at an air hole.” In short, whether out of boredom or stress, when he constantly flashes camera flashes in the eye or hits visitors to the windows of his enclosure, pizza seemed to be gradually losing his mind.

Pizzas misery is unfortunately not an isolated case. Even in more formal zoos and aquariums, social beings who are used to walking far, climbing high, or flying high, are often alone and isolated, in spaces too small to meet their basic needs, and where they are either too much attention of the wrong kind, or experience indifference or neglect. Like pizza, these animals wander restlessly and endlessly through their bare enclosures or spend their days in despair, turned face to the wall.

Polar Bear

Pizza was taken to the zoo in Tianjin near Beijing, where he was once born. However, the mall spokesman said that he will come back as soon as the bear’s enclosure has been renovated. Qin Xiaona, director of Beijing Animal Welfare Association and one of the main voices in favor of pizza, said to the three-year-old bear, “It’s a good decision, the right decision for pizza, but it is not final. Temporarily is not good enough. ”

She’s right – and that’s not just pizza. What he and the 500 other species Grandview hosts is room to roam, a chance to be with their fellows, and an opportunity to express their natural behavior – to seek, hunt, hunt down a partner to hide and play, in other words: (at least something) to be free.

If, for whatever reason, they can not survive in the wild, they should be withdrawn to protected areas in regions that are climate and geographic appropriate.
When nature is made into a commodity

It is, however, what we want and need for strange, profit-seeking, bipedal primates that are probably the most baffled and disturbed. In all societies we are attracted to charismatic wildlife such as bears, lions, wolves, tigers, eagles and others. These top predators have exerted their talisman power beyond our imagination, perhaps even before our species began to consider themselves separated from them (and superior to them). We long for their physical energy, their “otherness,” their fearsome strength and unusual grace, as well as their (compared to our) more advanced senses such as smell and hearing.


Pizza was taken to the zoo in Tianjin near Beijing, where he was once born. However, the mall spokesman said that he will come back as soon as the bear’s enclosure has been renovated. Qin Xiaona, director of Beijing Animal Welfare Association and one of the main voices in favor of pizza, said to the three-year-old bear, “It’s a good decision, the right decision for pizza, but it is not final. Temporarily is not good enough. ”

She’s right – and that’s not just pizza. What he and the 500 other species Grandview hosts is room to roam, a chance to be with their fellows, and an opportunity to express their natural behavior – to seek, hunt, hunt down a partner to hide and play, in other words: (at least something) to be free.

If, for whatever reason, they can not survive in the wild, they should be withdrawn to protected areas in regions that are climate and geographic appropriate.

When nature is made into a commodityIt is, however, what we want and need for strange, profit-seeking, bipedal primates that are probably the most baffled and disturbed. In all societies we are attracted to charismatic wildlife such as bears, lions, wolves, tigers, eagles and others. These top predators have exerted their talisman power beyond our imagination, perhaps even before our species began to consider themselves separated from them (and superior to them). We long for their physical energy, their “otherness,” their fearsome strength and unusual grace, as well as their (compared to our) more advanced senses such as smell and hearing.

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