Is it ever acceptable to go to the zoo? This is a question which a handful of years ago would have been thought of as ridiculous. After all, zoos are the home of golden childhood memories - and it is believed that they are the pinnacle of conservation, preserving gene banks of our most treasured species in case they become extinct in the wild. However, the ticket money is funding a world of pain for many sensitive animals which do not cope well in the confines of captivity, as the ever mounting evidence proves that many zoo animals live tortured, shortened lives - and in some cases, our most beloved creatures, including the magnificent elephant are driven mad with pain away from their natural habitat.
Helena has discovered that the conservation claims fall flat, too, and most animals in zoos will never be returned to the wild. They are simply there for entertainment purposes, and a very small proportion of ticket money goes back into wildlife conservation. Instead, it goes to build ever more gilded cages.
Helena's shocking investigation shatters the illusion that zoos are there for conservation, and with interviews with celebrities, campaigners and zoo insiders she tells the fascinating, if painful, story of the modern zoo - and whether it will exist in years to come.
Helena Horton is a national newspaper journalist. She spent six years at the Daily and Sunday Telegraph, where she became a prominent animal welfare and environment journalist and is now an Environment Reporter at the Guardian.
At age 27, she is known as the “go to” for all the latest news on animal welfare and the environment and has broken dozens of front page stories, and her campaigning journalism has changed laws. Her front-page Sunday Telegraph story on the ivory industry helped close a loophole in the ivory ban which saved hippos from poaching, and her work on the u...
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