Update: After PETA submitted complaints to both the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the USDA cited Bailiwick Animal Park for allowing workers to enter an enclosure to feed bears while the animals were still inside. OSHA also issued a hazard alert advising the roadside zoo to transfer the bears to a safe and secure area while workers clean the enclosure and supply food.
Originally posted on August 3, 2016:
PETA has filed a formal complaint today with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) based on video taken by a visitor to notorious roadside zoo Bailiwick Animal Park. The video shows a worker entering an enclosure to leave food while other workers attempt to distract an apparently agitated bear—and as the employee begins to exit the pen, the animal gives chase. The worker narrowly escapes, and the bear comes close to escaping the pen and putting himself and members of the public at risk.
PETA has also alerted the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to the eyewitness documentation, which shows other animals in apparent distress, including baboons and coatimundis pacing incessantly, a lemur circling endlessly, and a pig-tailed macaque—a highly social animal who lives in large groups in nature—being kept in solitary confinement. The eyewitness also reported evidence of animal neglect, including a coatimundi with a skin condition and unshorn animals—both issues that have been documented before at the facility.
“When wild animals are kept as lures by reckless and negligent outfits like Bailiwick Animal Park, both the animals and human visitors are put in danger,” stated PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Brittany Peet. “PETA is calling on the authorities to hold this hellhole accountable for every animal-welfare and employee-safety violation they find.”
According to USDA reports, Bailiwick was cited in 2015 for leaving a red fox to become frostbitten in freezing temperatures and for failing to seek veterinary care for the animal, who died the next day. The facility was also cited in 2013 when staffers failed to call a veterinarian in a timely manner after noticing changes in a chimpanzee’s behavior in the days preceding her death. In addition, the roadside zoo has been cited for water containers that were filled with algae and mud and animal enclosures that were infested with rats.
What You Can Do
PETA knows animals are not ours to use for entertainment. Please never patronize roadside zoos or traveling menageries. Roadside zoos are pitiful prisons. The money spent on ticket purchases pays for animals to be imprisoned and traded, not rescued and rehabilitated.