Following online uproar over a video of a bear savaging a monkey during a bear-monkey-bicycle-race at the Shanghai Wild Animal Park, the park, which has a long history of abusing its animals, is back to business as usual, according to the Shanghai Daily.
According to park officials, the monkey survived the bear attack and “carried on with his act”.
Ni Li, a park official, said none of the animals were injured. Ni insisted that the bear just pressed the monkey down on the floor and they were pacified by their keepers.
Ni said the bear was also wearing an anti-biting muzzle and so did not actually hurt the monkey.
Activists and netizens have called for an end to the so-called ‘Animal Olympics’ at the park (which did reportedly stop for a brief period in 2006 after a similar uproar) which contravenes regulations against zoos hosting animal performances. Unfortunately, the regulations are completely toothless, with no punishment for transgressors.
“The performance mistreats animals in [the name of entertainment],” Dr Sun Quanhui of the World Society for the Protection of Animals, told the Shanghai Daily. “Animals react aggressively when they are tense or scared,” he said.
Campaigners claim that the ‘Olympics’ involve harsh training methods such as starving the animals, and many die or suffer injuries.