Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Write an non biased Informative Speech on the pros and cons of Animals in zoos using the sources from your work cited and additional information you find must be cited in your speech using M | WriteDen

Write an non biased Informative Speech on the pros and cons of Animals in zoos using the sources from your work cited and additional information you find must be cited in your speech using M

Write an non biased Informative Speech on the pros and cons of Animals in zoos using the sources from your work cited and additional information you find must be cited in your speech using MLA or APA format.

The sources are attached below 

Speech must be 2 Pages long


Positive reinforcement training and environmental enrichment: enhancing animal well-being

It has been 18 years since the Animal Welfare Act mandated that facilities housing nonhuman primates provide for their psychologic well-being, triggering a concerted effort by scientists and professionals to enhance the welfare of all captive animals. Today, it is difficult to assess the progress made or whether, over- all, captive animals are substantially better off. In gen- eral, zoos are good at providing animals with the basics: quality food and medical care, a safe and secure place to live, a naturalistic environment, and appropri- ate social contacts. Increasing longevity and reproduc- tion of many species are indicators of the success of this pursuit. Despite these efforts, some observations about a wild animal’s life in captivity can be made. These animals are spatially limited in an environ- ment that is sterile and unchanging, in comparison to the wild. There are no predators or prey. Social group size and configuration are limited and, in most cases, there is no diversity of species present. They must eat a fixed diet when and where it is offered, even if the feed- ing method is unnatural. And most zoo animals still spend most of their time in holding areas that are small- er and more barren than the exhibit spaces zoo visitors see. The net result is that captive animals have little control over their lives. Negative consequences ranging from boredom to stereotypic behavior often result. Given these realities of zoo life, addressing animal welfare is a daunting task. Most will agree that welfare is not something that an animal either has or does not have. Rather, it lies on a continuum from poor to good. Petto et al1 suggest that psychologic well-being be gen- erally defined as “the ability to adapt—to respond and adjust to changing situations.” To assess well-being, they recommend using a combination of variables, including behavior, health, reproduction, and longevi- ty. Desmond 2 suggests that in pursuing enhanced ani- mal welfare, the behavior of the animal “should be the lens through which we focus our efforts.” Shepherdson 3 provides a detailed framework using observable behavior as an indicator of well-being. He notes that most animal welfare researchers would agree that enhanced well-being requires that animals have a reasonable measure of choice and control in their lives and that they are “behaviorally competent and empow- ered to act on their own behalf.” He suggests that ani- mals experiencing enhanced welfare should be free of behaviors that are abnormal or indicative of fear and frustration. They should actively explore and interact with their environment and demonstrate a diversity of behavior similar to that typically observed in the wild. Finally, they should demonstrate behavioral flexibility and appropriate responses to changing circumstances. With these behavioral objectives in mind, this paper will explore how positive reinforcement training and environmental enrichment can address 2 broad aspects of captive animal welfare: helping animals to cope and prosper in an “artificial” zoological system and maintaining as much “naturalness” in this new context as possible. Positive reinforcement training and environmental enrichment: enhancing animal well-being Gail Ellen Laule, MA From Active Environments Incorporated, 7651 Santos Rd, Lompoc, CA 93436. awf03.qxd 9/10/2003 1:49 PM Page 969

Define Your Training System In assessing the benefits of training to animals, par- ticularly in regard to welfare, it is important to distin- guish the type of training being used and specific tech- niques employed. The training recommended in this paper is based on the use of positive reinforcement; ani- mals are rewarded with something they like for the desired behavioral response. Operationally, it means that the positive alternatives are exhausted before any kind of negative reinforcement is used. On the rare occasions when an escape-avoidance technique is nec- essary, it is kept to a minimum and balanced by positive reinforcement the vast majority of the time. Physical punishment is not appropriate as a training technique, and no food deprivation is required. Animals are fed their daily diet, and rewards for training include por- tions of that diet or extra treats. Finally, this training relies on the voluntary cooperation of the animal. Unfortunately, captive animal management prac- tices have traditionally included a large measure of negative reinforcement. Although this training works, there is an inherent cost to the animal’s welfare when it is forced to cooperate through the threat of a negative event that elicits fear or anxiety.4 Consider a primate that must receive an injection for its health. If negative reinforcement is used, training the animal to present a leg for the injection requires the threat of an even more negative stimulus, thus exposing the animal to stress from both stimuli. Using positive reinforcement, the animal is trained through shaping and rewards to vol- untarily present the leg and is concurrently desensi- tized to the procedure to reduce the associated fear or anxiety. It seems reasonable to say that positive rein- forcement training is consistent with efforts to con- tribute to that animal’s welfare. Basics of Environmental Enrichment There have been different names used to refer to the process we call environmental enrichment. In this paper, I am using the term and definition developed by the Behavior Husbandry Advisory Group for the American Zoological and Aquarium Association: “Environmental enrichment is a process for improving or enhancing zoo animal environments and care with- in the context of their inhabitant’s behavioral biology and natural history. It is a dynamic process in which changes to structures and husbandry practices are made with the goal of increasing behavioral choices available to animals and drawing out their species- appropriate behaviors and abilities, thus enhancing animal welfare.” Research has shown that the key to successful enrichment is in its complexity and variability.5-7 These features keep enrichment interesting and novel and encourage animals to interact with their environment. Enrichment is divided into the following categories: • Physical enrichment, including natural features (eg, logs, rocks, water, and substrate) and artificial items (eg, culverts, ropes, cargo nets, and platforms) used to create useful elements (eg, perches, dens, climb- ing structures, and lookouts). It also includes tem- perature, light, sound, and space use, as well as arti- ficial and natural manipulable objects and toys. • Feeding enrichment, including the type of foods provided and the frequency and method of deliv- ery, with emphasis on novelty and variety. Examples include feeding whole, frozen, chopped, and live food items that are dispersed, hidden, buried, or hung in the environment. • Sensory enrichment, entailing stimulating the sens- es by introducing music or nature sounds; perfumes, spices, and urine or fecal scents of other species; edi- ble plantings; varied bedding materials, such as straw and shavings; varied light and dark spaces; and temperature variations created by hot rocks, misters, ice shavings, and heated or cooled spaces. • Social enrichment, referring to group size, compo- sition, and changes within groups caused by births and the introduction of new animals, as well as compatible mixed-species situations. • Occupational enrichment, including introducing items that encourage problem solving and physical manipulation by the animal and activities like pos- itive reinforcement training. • Human-animal interactions, including play, grooming, brushing, and training for husbandry purposes and other behaviors like painting, retrieval, and A to B’s to encourage exercise. Living in the Zoo—Helping Animals to Cope To help animals cope and prosper in an “artificial” zoologic system, we must consider the routine events animals are exposed to that may be in conflict with nat- ural behavior, and a source of short-term stress and, in some cases, long-term distress. Among these events are: • Daily routine husbandry activities, including shift- ing animals between enclosures; brief physical examinations; short-term separations from con- specifics; noninvasive procedures, such as skin care, hoof or claw trims, urine collection, and minor wound treatment; and short-term restraint. • Veterinary procedures that are uncomfortable, inva- sive, require special equipment or greater restraint, including blood draws, injections, more thorough physical examinations, TB testing, serious wound treatment, radiography, and ultrasonography. • Social housing and resultant behavioral problems, including aggression and excessive dominance, which threaten the safety and welfare of individual animals because of a lack of sufficient physical space and alternative social grouping options. Although husbandry routines, veterinary proce- dures, and social living are all important components of captive animal care and welfare, each comes with a substantial cost to the animal. Positive reinforcement training is an effective technique to minimize these costs and maximize benefits. The training process rewards animals with something they like for voluntar- ily cooperating in necessary behaviors, from shifting on and off exhibit to having a blood sample taken. This voluntary cooperation provides animals the opportuni- ty to work for food, 8,9 achieve greater choice and con- trol over daily events,10 and experience greater mental stimulation.11 A more tangible benefit of voluntary cooperation is reduced use of physical restraint and anesthesia


Upsetting the Ark

Zoos are under increasing pressure today to justify their existence

Pawtucket, R.I., is in a jam. Until recently, the blue-collar town's main claim to fame was a feisty, minor-league ball club. But now it is becoming notorious as the home of a zoo that has been widely assailed as obsolete and inhumane. At first glance, Slater Park Zoo looks well kept, the animals healthy. But a look behind the scenes reveals that none of the 53-year-old zoo's 70 animals is part of a carefully managed breeding program to conserve the species. Moreover, there are almost no educational materials — not even cursory tags identifying the animals — to teach visitors about the fragile condition of the world's wildlife. But turning Slater Park into a modern zoo — a conservatory and classroom — will require money the town doesn't have. “We are at a crossroads; either we improve or shut down,'' says Director William Mulholland.

Slater Park Zoo's troubles reflect a widening controversy over the role of modern zoos. While at one time a zoo's mission was pure entertainment, in the past two decades many zoo keepers have argued that zoos have a new role to play as conservation centers. More people visit America's zoos each year than attend professional football, basketball and baseball games combined and, by all accounts, many of these zoos have the potential to both preserve endangered species and educate people about the effort.

Hard times. But charting a new course, especially during recessionary times, has proved difficult. Even some of the big zoos have fallen on hard times. The august London Zoo, for instance, is on the verge of closing, plagued by a $3.9 million deficit, plummeting attendance and critics who argue that the money could be better used protecting animals in their natural habitat. Says one zoo educator, “We all have doubts as to whether zoos should exist.''

Early zoo keepers experienced no such existential crisis. The zoos of the 19th century were often created and maintained to flaunt an imperialist nation's dominion over remote, exotic lands, and zoos competed among themselves, often at the expense of beleaguered animal populations. In her book, “The Animal Estate,'' Harriet Ritvo describes how the London Zoo hurriedly acquired giant pandas in the 1890s simply because European zoos were displaying the unfamiliar beasts. Moreover, zoo animals were mistreated by modern standards and died like flies, so their ranks had to be replenished constantly with animals from the wild. In the 1920s, for instance, William Mann, superintendent of the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., spent six months in East Africa, returning with more than 1,000 animals, including elephant shrews, giraffes and a leopard.

But as animal life has become increasingly threatened in the wild and the animal-rights movement has grown in numbers and clout, zoos have deliberately lessened their pressure on wild populations. Fully four fifths of the mammals currently residing in zoos were born in captivity, according to Nate Flesness, executive director of the International Species Information System (ISIS), a Minnesota-based register of captive animals. Moreover, the zoos' record is getting better all the time. Over 90 percent of the mammals added last year were bred in captivity.

Old habits. But zoos haven't shed their old consumptive habits entirely. Their record on reptiles, for instance, is still pretty shoddy. More than half of the reptiles living in zoos were snatched from the wild, and fully one third of those put behind glass for the first time last year were trapped rather than bred.

Some dubious practices result from putting profit before preservation, critics maintain. The Columbus Zoo in Columbus, Ohio, for example, is renting giant pandas from China this summer, as part of the city's celebration of Columbus's voyage of discovery. But according to the World Wildlife Fund's Rich Block, these endangered animals ought to be left in the wild, or at the least placed in breeding programs in China, rather than being shipped to an American zoo. Columbus Zoo officials maintain that their purpose is to educate people about conservation. But critics suggest that the real motive is to draw tourist dollars to the city, since pandas attract zoo visitors in droves. The American Association of Zoological Parks and Aquariums has suspended the Columbus Zoo for violating its standards on importing endangered animals.

Many zoos have eased into their new role as conservator with captive breeding programs. Indeed, some species owe their existence in large part to zoos. The Siberian tiger, Eld's deer and several lemur species, for instance, have been bred so successfully in zoos that these species now have a reasonable chance of survival. Zoos have also played a vital role in the reintroduction of several species to the wild. Three decades ago, for instance, the Arabian oryx, a creamy-white, pony-size creature with sweeping horns, teetered on the brink of oblivion. A small herd was brought from the Middle East to the Phoenix and San Diego zoos, among others. Today a wild population of more than 100 is flourishing in the Oman desert. Zoo-reared California condors, Bali mynahs and golden lion tamarins are also being introduced to protected reserves.

But though the successes of captive breeding in zoos are real, they are oversold, says David Hancocks of the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum near Tucson. He argues that though the AAZPA includes 159 member institutions with annual operating expenses of more than $1 billion and a work force of some 16,000, the organization has established tightly managed “species survival plans'' for only 64 species. Although there are loosely managed programs for dozens more species, all told, American zoos house some 4,000 species. The conservation record is worse in the 200 or so smaller zoos that, like the Slater Park facility, don't meet AAZPA standards. “[People] think that they don't have to worry about animal extinctions because zoos are saving them,'' says Hancocks. “But that's hogwash.''

Furthermore, not all captive breeding aids conservation. Many births at zoos are not planned but are simply the result of animals' being housed together. Under such circumstances, new arrivals often are genetically weakened and inbred. Also, zoos frequently can't accommodate burgeoning family groups, so some animals have to be discarded. The lucky or well-born find homes at accredited zoos, but many are put to death or sold to game ranches, roadside menageries, amusement parks or circuses.

Desperately seeking. Though the AAZPA will not release information on the number of surplus animals, U.S. News has obtained a recent issue of the organization's guarded listing of zoos' excess stock. In June 1992 alone, the “Animal Exchange'' advertised 1,973 animals. Granted, not all surplus animals stem from indiscriminate matings; occasionally animals are cast off when a zoo changes its mission, and even legitimate breeding programs sometimes produce a “surplus'' animal — a male when a female is needed, for example. Still, the AAZPA listing represents just the tip of the iceberg, contends John Grandy of the Humane Society of the United States. Better zoos often trade animals without advertising them, he says, and the list doesn't include surplus stock of non-AAZPA-accredited zoos.

But even if zoos dedicate themselves to wildlife conservation, there is a widening debate about whether they can truly be arks. According to biologists, the planet hosts about 10 million species, one third of which face extinction in the next several decades. Michael Robinson, director of the National Zoo, argues that while zoos have an important role to play in preserving biodiversity, that role is public education, not captive breeding. “There's absolutely no way we can be arks to the millions of species at risk,'' he says. Robinson contends that the only way to halt the destruction is to change people's attitudes and that zoos must evolve into institutions that teach people to treasure the natural world.

Although zoos clearly cannot save all the species at risk, some zoo defenders argue that the institutions have a crucial role to play in sheltering larger species that can no longer be saved through habitat protection alone. The Sumatran tiger, for instance, could be conserved in situ, writes Colin Tudge in his recent book, “Last Animals at the Zoo'' — but only if population growth on Sumatra were curbed and huge tracts of forest replanted. That is about as likely as Floridians abandoning their cities for the sake of the threatened Florida panther.

How many of these bigger animals are likely to need help in coming decades? A lot, but not so many that zoos can't shelter a significant proportion of them, argues Bronx Zoo Director William Conway. Experts estimate that about 2,000 species of land vertebrates will face extinction over the next two centuries. Conway calculates that if all the world's zoos devoted half their facilities to breeding endangered animals, they could support some 800 species. (To keep species from becoming inbred, each population would need a couple of hundred animals.) In addition, Conway says, some species would require shelter only until they could be successfully reintroduced into the wild. “The doomsayers are overdoing it; if we could save 25 percent, that would be great,'' he says.

Even zoos' staunchest supporters concede that transforming a municipal zoo into an institution devoted to global conservation is an uphill battle. Many have crusty bureaucracies, and even when the zoo director supports a fundamental change in mission, he often has to fight city hall and the public to bring it about. The citizens of more than one city have strenuously battled their zoos when officials tried to get rid of lions or bears to make room for less romantic, but more endangered, species.

But the zoo community is changing, however glacially. Last month, the AAZPA hired a new executive director, Sydney Butler, formerly of the Wilderness Society, who vows to increase the number of species survival plans from 64 to 200 by the year 2000. More zoos are registering their animals with the ISIS network and engaging in conservation research. More are also taking education seriously, replacing tired signs on “migration'' or “the water cycle'' with displays that have a strong conservation message.

As biologists often comment, when species are faced with a change in environment, they can adapt or die. And so it will be with zoos. Over the next couple of decades, many will meet the conservation challenge and emerge stronger. But others, like the teetering Slater Park Zoo, may well become extinct.

Picture: Eye contact. One of the reasons 115 million Americans visit zoos every year is for a sense of connectedness with other animals. (Nicholas Conte — Bruce Coleman)

Picture: Zoo as classroom. Biodiversity lessons (James Balog — Bruce Coleman)

Pictures: Unnatural. Some zoo keepers argue that zoos cannot meet the needs of elephants and bears and oppose keeping them in captivity. In the wild, bears are continually exploring their surroundings, while elephants are intelligent and require large social groups to thrive. (James Balog — Bruce Coleman; Jean Pierre Pieuchot — Image Bank)

Picture: Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. Focus on local species (Craig Aurness — Westlight)

Picture: Simulated tropics. The Bronx Zoo's Jungle World houses larger populations of fewer species to encourage breeding. (Michael Dick — Animals Animals)


By Betsy Carpenter

Two by two


After weeks of anxious waiting, Betsy Dresser finally got the call that Desi the cat was going into labor. The director of research at the Cincinnati Zoo Center for Reproduction of Endangered Wildlife felt her heart sink when she saw the first kitten — a stillborn. But the second trembled with life, and soon the tiny spotted Noah was greedily nursing. It was a timeless scene, yet a rarity. Noah was the first Indian desert cat born to its domesticated cousin, the result of an interspecies embryo transfer.

Zoos are increasingly adapting the latest in human and agricultural reproductive technologies to aid beleaguered species by boosting their numbers, increasing gene variety in small populations and controlling inbreeding. Although still in the early stages, embryo transfers, artificial insemination and even test-tube fertilization are seen by zoologists as having real or potential applications in conserving endangered wildlife. Says Dresser, “The technology is there, but there are still so many subtle details to work out for each animal species.''

Not until 20 years ago did zoos even start to experiment with reproductive technologies — beginning with contraceptives to prevent inbreeding and overbreeding. Today, many female apes take daily birth-control pills — the same ones designed for women — and large cats and other mammals are frequently implanted with a Norplant-like device.

Selecting mates. About the same time, zoos began developing artificial-insemination techniques to expand possible mating pairs and help them produce the most genetically valuable animals. Adapting this technology has proved more difficult than expected, however. After 18 years of intimate tinkering, scientists still haven't successfully adapted livestock techniques for use in elephants. Coaxing a 13,000-pound aggressive male to donate semen is no easy task, explains Anne Schmidt of the Portland Zoo. In addition, it's very tricky to measure the female's blood hormone levels to pinpoint the one day in 16 weeks that she's fertile.

A few zoos are now experimenting with even-more-sophisticated technologies borrowed from human fertility clinics — test-tube fertilization and surrogate motherhood, for example. David Wildt of Washington, D.C.'s National Zoo recently took his mobile lab team to a zoo in Omaha, where they collected eggs from a valuable Bengal tiger and mixed them in a vial with semen from a selected male. After ensuring that the eggs were fertilized and dividing, they injected the resulting eight embryos into the uterus of a surrogate mother — a Siberian tiger — who bore two live Bengal tiger cubs.

Such surrogates could rapidly boost populations of dwindling species. For instance, inbred females — considered “genetic junk'' — could carry and deliver more-valuable offspring of other animals. Holstein cows and domestic cats like Desi could also mass-produce genetically related but threatened species. But so far, says Dresser, successful births are still rare events. Zoos have tested surrogates for just 20 species and have produced offspring in 10.

Because it takes years of research to develop these technologies, a few zoos are beginning to freeze and bank for future use the genetic raw materials of endangered animals. For example, Dresser froze eggs from a rare female Sumatran rhino that died, hoping one day to obtain some sperm and learn how to make test-tube rhino embryos. The eggs, she says, should keep for generations, as should the sperm from 500 species and the embryos of eight species housed in Cincinnati's “frozen zoo.''

As an additional safety net, San Diego Zoo's Center for Reproduction of Endangered Species is keeping frozen skin cells — a source of DNA — for 230 mammal species, ranging from aardvarks to zebras. Oliver Ryder, a geneticist at the center, compares the information in this DNA with the rich records that burned with ancient Egypt's great Alexandrian library: “Future generations won't be happy about what has been lost,'' he notes, “but they'll be thankful for what we save.''

Picture: San Diego's “frozen zoo.'' Genes for future breeding (Karen Kasmauski — Woodfin Camp)


By Karen F. Schmidt


Jada Soto



Research Assignment

Carpenter,Betsy., et al. “Upsetting the arc” U.S. News & World Report, Vol. 113, issue 8, July.1992, pp. 57. EBSCOhost.

This article discusses the pressure facing zoos today. It includes the pros and cons of zoos currently from both sides, while adding information on certain zoo’s standards. 

Laule,Gail., et al. “Positive reinforcement training and environmental enrichment: enhancing animal well-being” Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Vol. 223, issue 7, October.2003, pp.969-973. EBSCOhost, doi:10.2460/javma.2003.223.969

This article discusses the positive reinforcement training of animals in zoos, but also adds counter information on the cons of keeping animals in captive. The article is unbiased by going back in forth from pros to cons. 

Learmonth,Mark James. et al. “Dilemmas for Natural Living Concepts of Zoo Animal Welfare” Vol. 9, issue 6, June.2019, pp.318. EBSCOhost, doi:10.3390/ani9060318 

This article discusses the issues with animal welfare currently in zoos, but also discusses the pros in the ethical behaviors found in zoos. It will benefit my presentation by giving me further information on how zoos have both benefits to animals and non benefits that I can present to my fellow classmates. For example the discussion of the benefit of animals having human contact. 

Gaille, Louise. “21 Pros and Cons of Zoos.”, 16 Dec. 2019, .

This article discusses the pros and cons of zoos, while also providing a background of what zoos are in history including names of some zoos and exhibits. This will help my presentation by giving direct information using numerical bullet points in subtitles of the exact reasons why zooms are both good and bad.


21 Pros and Cons of Zoos

June 4, 2017 by Louise Gaille

Zoos go by several different official names. They can be called “animal parks,” “menageries,” or “zoological gardens.” Despite the different names, each offers visitors the chance to view animals that are confined in an enclosure. Many zoos have breeding programs in place to help eliminate genetic bottlenecks, especially when dealing with an endangered species.

Zoos have been part of our human history from the very beginning when early humans began documenting what happened to them. One of the oldest known zoos was discovered in Egypt in 2009 and was believed to have existed in 3,500 BC. Evidence of elephants, wildcats, baboons, and hippopotami were discovered at the location.

The benefit of having a local zoo is that it gives people an opportunity to learn more about the animals and nature. It is a way to engage children in science, bring families together, and help save certain animal species that are close to extinction.

As for the disadvantages of a zoo, the facilities that are offered can be abused for personal or political gain. One of the earliest zoos in the Western Hemisphere didn’t feature animals. It featured people that had different physical traits, such as having dwarfism or albinism. Even the Catholic Church has a zoo which feature a collection of people from different races and tribes as late as the 16th century.

Ota Benga was part of a human exhibit at zoos in the United States as late as 1906, in St. Louis and the Bronx Zoo.

The pros and cons of zoos are important to consider from a modern standpoint. Our views about zoos may have changed, but is it still ethical to support animal captivity?

What Are the Pros of Having Zoos?

1. Zoos provide an educational resource. The modern zoo plays a critical role in education children and families about the different animals with whom we share this planet. Staff from a zoo will travel to local schools to make presentations, offer special programs on the zoo grounds, and partner with community providers to extend educational opportunities to everyone. No matter what a person’s socioeconomic status may be, there is a chance to learn something new because of the work of a zoo.

2. A zoo provides a protected environment for endangered animals. There are several animals which are poached frequently because of certain items. Having a zoo provides these animals with a safer place to live because they are behind multiple levels of protection. Although poachers have been able to break into zoos to t


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