For the first time in more than 100 years, Chicago-area zoos are without elephants. Recognizing the elephant’s need for companionship, officials at Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo have returned the facility’s only elephant, Joyce, who was on loan from Six Flags.
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The “Windy (and freezing) City” is no place for elephants. PETA has urged zoos in northern climates, including Brookfield, to close their elephant exhibits because it’s unhealthy for these massive animals to spend months at a time locked in concrete barns during long, bitterly cold winters.
In 2005, the Detroit Zoo became the first to close its elephant exhibit for purely ethical reasons—citing climate as one of them. After three elephants died at Chicago’s lakefront Lincoln Park Zoo, camels were placed in the empty elephant exhibit. In 2006, the Bronx Zoo announced that it was phasing out elephants, and last year, the Philadelphia Zoo closed its elephant exhibit.
Please politely ask officials at Brookfield Zoo to scrap plans to renovate and re-stock the elephant exhibit.
Written by Karin Bennett