Feds Sue Decrepit Roadside Zoo for Alleged Violations of Animal-Welfare Law

PETA Complaints Prompt Inspections, Exposing Apparent Untreated Injuries, Distressed Tiger Cub

For Immediate Release:
June 23, 2015

Contact:
David Perle 202-483-7382

Calhan, Colo. – Notorious roadside zoo Big Cats of Serenity Springs (BCSS) has just been hit with a new complaint from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and may soon face legal consequences for its long history of Animal Welfare Act (AWA) citations, many of which were issued during inspections prompted by PETA complaints. The violations alleged in the federal complaint included failure to provide numerous visibly sick, underweight, and lame tigers with adequate veterinary care. Workers also failed to notice that a cougar was dead until a USDA inspector pointed out the animal’s stiff body covered with snow, and BCSS transported several 3-day-old, unweaned tigers to the notorious Garold Wayne Interactive Zoological Park, where they died within two days of arriving.

“As concerned visitors have told PETA for years, animal neglect is par for the course at Serenity Springs,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders. “Until the facility is shut down and all animals are relocated to reputable sanctuaries, every animal imprisoned on the premises is in danger.”

BCSS operator Nick Sculac—who is also named in the AWA complaint—reported to the USDA in 2014 that he held 113 animals, and USDA inspection reports reveal citations relating to many of them, including animals who were found suffering from untreated injuries and illness as well as deprived of shade and secure enclosures. Other citations alleged that young tiger cubs were subjected to excessive handling and that photo ops with tigers and members of the public were held without barriers—putting both the animals and human visitors at risk. Another series of allegations claims that BCSS failed to provide Maverick the tiger—who suffered from a limp so severe that he stumbled and fell—with adequate veterinary care even after the USDA ordered it to do so. PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—encourages families to steer clear of all facilities profiting from the exploitation of vulnerable animals.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind