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Should We Kill Four Lions for the Sake of the Pride?



A wave of fresh outrage spread across the globe in March after the Copenhagen Zoo — now infamous for killing a healthy 18-month-old giraffe just over a month ago — culled four lions to make room for a new male who they hope will start a new pride. But even more than outrage, the killings have spurred conversation about how best to control animal populations in zoos.

European zoos like the one in Copenhagen often favor euthanasia when a population gets out of control or becomes too genetically similar, which puts the animals at risk of inbreeding. Zoos in Europe don’t have the range of options that American zoos have when it comes to moving animals to other locations that are more suitable. Many of them argue that euthanizing some animals is often better for the population as a whole because it allows grown animals to rear their offspring to a point. Copenhagen Zoo is against birth control because it prevents animals from acting as they would in the wild. Read more…

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