Do foreign zoos have North American exhibits?
October 17, 2004 12:19 PM   Subscribe

Here in North America, our zoos are packed with exotic animals from Africa, Europe, and Australia. They interest us because we can't otherwise see them live without actually traveling to their country of origin.

So I was wondering: Do zoos in other continents feature any of North America's more 'exotic' animals prominently in their zoos? Are moose, for instance, a popular attraction in some countries?
posted by Evstar to Society & Culture (20 answers total)
When I went to the zoo in Sydney, I remember seeing mostly Asian and Australian animals. I don't recall seeing anything from North America on display as "exotic."
posted by mathowie at 1:24 PM on October 17, 2004

Good question, bad example-- there are plenty of moose in northern europe. And probably in Siberia, as well.
posted by Mayor Curley at 1:24 PM on October 17, 2004

Grizzly bears, alligators, bison and various snakes comes to mind.

a moose once bit my sister
posted by mr.marx at 1:56 PM on October 17, 2004

I went to a zoo in Melbourne, Aus and the first animal I saw was a Canadian Bison. I'd never actually seen one here in Canada before so it was a little bizarre.
posted by dobbs at 2:14 PM on October 17, 2004

Hell, there are moose and bison and all sorts of local Canadian animals proudly on display at the Toronto Zoo.

But my favorite were the Przewalski's Horse.
posted by Sidhedevil at 2:24 PM on October 17, 2004

I was at the zoo in Bangkok a couple of weeks ago, and the only North American animal I remember seeing was a rattlesnake.

There was also a special dairy cow exhibit that was popular with the children, but I believe they have their own cattle industry. I doubt they were North American cattle.
posted by sleslie at 2:36 PM on October 17, 2004

You just missed the muay thai orangutans.
posted by the cuban at 3:20 PM on October 17, 2004

I have read heartbreaking accounts of zoos in China where dogs and cats are kept on display among the more exotic - and also neglected and mistreated - animals.
posted by icetaco at 5:41 PM on October 17, 2004

Oh, and if you have the stomach to read about some of the horrors that pass for zoos in China, here's a good place to start. Steel yourself, especially if you plan to view the photos.
posted by icetaco at 5:47 PM on October 17, 2004

Beware, AAPN are just another insane group of over-the-top animal-rights-over-human-rights groups.

They disbelieve in pet ownership, yet would disagree with putting animals that shit and fuck in public streets in hand (paw?) cuffs. I'm sorry, but with rights come responsibilities. Those that, in the general case, lack the ability to follow law should not be given such rights. And before we mention those that are disabled, those so disabled they are unable to follow basic law do, in fact, have many rights taken from them (mobility rights, rights to govern their personal lives [government is instituted as a guardian], etc.)

Furthermore, AAPN would rather see a motorcyclist get a skin graft than wear protective leathers.

Last, but certainly not least, AAPN would like for all you diabetics dependant on insulin to fuck off and die, TYVM. Not to mention their belief that eating standard North American animals is somehow better than asians eating alternative meat sources.

Fortunately, I didn't show you pictures of diabetics dying from a lack of insulin, or people getting skin grafts. You only need to shock when you don't have a good point to start with.
posted by shepd at 7:55 PM on October 17, 2004

Wellington Zoo in New Zealand has had in the past Bison, a Black Bear, Alligators and Wolves (although they were arctic wolves).
Currently they only have Barbary Sheep.
posted by X-00 at 12:29 AM on October 18, 2004

Beware, AAPN are just another insane group of over-the-top animal-rights-over-human-rights groups.

Don’t make me come over there mate.
posted by ed\26h at 1:37 AM on October 18, 2004

I don't see what you're talking about, shepd. The pages you link to don't express the opinions you state in your post as far as I can see. For example, here is a quote from your companion animals link:

We promote the keeping of companion animals as there are many benefits to the animals and to the humans - but only when there are adequate facilities to ensure a satisfactory standard of care.

Nothing too radical there, and it seems to directly contradict your statement. I also saw nothing about how people on insulin should "fuck off and die". Instead they simply support an investigation into synthesizing animal-derived medicines.
posted by hazyjane at 2:53 AM on October 18, 2004

posted by ed\26h at 3:53 AM on October 18, 2004

This discussion has gone slightly off-topic. Please, save that for the blue.

As a European, animals native to North America are exotic to me. Why shouldn't they be?
posted by salmacis at 5:17 AM on October 18, 2004

Here's a list of European Zoos. Many of them have websites and probably lists of animals you could check.

I'm going to make up a list of criteria that determine whether or not a specific animal is popular to display in a zoo.

1.Can it eat you?
2.Is it morphologically exceptional in size, shape, coloration?
3.Does it look like a familiar animal that Industrial Light and Magic has gotten ahold of?
4.Does it look like us AND throw its own poop?
5. Is it iconic of a place, or timeperiod?

Based on these criteria I will proclaim that the most common North American animals in zoos outside of NA are:

Kodiak Bears.
Bald Eagles.
American Bison.
Polar Bears, if we're allowed to claim them.

Thank you for your attention.
We now return you to the reality already in progress.
posted by putzface_dickman at 10:03 AM on October 18, 2004

I should also have said that there are a lot more animals other places that meet those criteria better.

Carry on.
posted by putzface_dickman at 10:05 AM on October 18, 2004

I remember an episode of Crocodile Hunter where Steve Irwin visited North America and expressed great enthusiasm at the prospect of seeing beaver, which he considered an exotic and fascinating animal.
posted by Mars Saxman at 10:40 AM on October 18, 2004

I thought Steve was married.
posted by mr.marx at 12:43 PM on October 18, 2004

Europeans: our squirrels are GRAY! Isn't that exotic!
posted by ParisParamus at 1:30 PM on October 18, 2004

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