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Do their advantages exceed their disadvantages?
- By bringing people and animals together, zoos foster an appreciation of animals. This could motivate people to protect them.
- Zoos save endangered species by bringing them into a safe environment, where they are protected from poachers, habitat loss, starvation, and predators.
- Many zoos also have breeding programs for endangered species. In the wild, these individuals might have trouble finding mates and breeding.
- In a good zoo, animals are never bored, are well cared-for, and have plenty of space.
- A visit to a zoo is a wholesome family activity.
- Seeing an animal in person is a much more personal and memorable experience than seeing it in a wildlife documentary.
- Some zoos help rehabilitate animals and take in exotic pets that people no longer want or are no longer able to care for.
- They allow researchers and scientists to obtain a better understanding of the way animals live. This could be helpful in saving more of them.
- Having zoos means that all animals are cared for and do not suffer from illness or malnutrition.
- Zoos can be educational, teaching children and adults about animals and the way they live.
- We do not have the right to breed, capture and confine animals, even if they are endangered. Being a member of an endangered species does not mean the individual animals have fewer rights.
- Animals suffer from stress and boredom in captivity.
- Removing animals from the wild will further endanger the wild population because the remaining ones will have more difficulty finding mates.
- If people want to see wild animals in person, they can observe them in the wild or visit a sanctuary.
- Sanctuaries also rehabilitate animals and take in unwanted exotic pets, without breeding, buying and selling animals like zoos do.
- If zoos are teaching children anything, it is that imprisoning animals for our own entertainment is acceptable.
- Studies have shown that animals kept in zoos do not live as long as those in the wild.
- Animals sometimes escape their enclosures, endangering themselves as well as people.
- If zoo-born animals are released into the wild, they will have a very difficult time adapting to the environment.