Saturday, August 17, 2013

Mali Is Suffering But The Good News Is She's On Her Way to Zoobic Safari

Wazzup Pilipinas!

The photo above was posted online by GMA Network News Online last February 2013 and I decided to repost this when I saw photos of Mali (The Asian elephant who was stolen from her family at 3 years old and imprisoned at the Manila Zoo in the Philippines) on a Facebook friend's timeline along with a status that shares his imaginary conversation with the the elephant.

PETA has caled for the transfer of the Mali from Manila Zoo to a sanctuary in Thailand. They insisted that Mali is in a wretched state given that her enclosure is too small for her. She was even suffering from some kind of foot disease and from “profound loneliness” having no other elephant companion in decades.

Indeed, Mali is by her lonesome at the Manila Zoo, with no other elephant to give her companionship or an opportunity to mate with other elephants. Mali has been held at the zoo for 36 long years, 33 of them completely alone. But Dr. Donald Manalastas, Manila Zoo's Zoological Division chief, said before that the trip to Thailand may be dangerous to the pachyderm's health since the long distance transportation will be very stressful to the "fairly old" animal.

But I've heard news that Mali will be transferred instead to another zoo, but bigger and better, that's also located wihtin the Philippines. Is that better news or not?

My friend posted the following on his status along with the photo of Mali the elephant:

"I went to the Manila Zoo with my niece and Milk this afternoon. Now that I am looking at the photos, and after my ‪#‎imaginary‬ conversation with ‪#‎Mali‬. It disturbs me.

Here is just part of my conversation with #mali.

Hi Mali, is it Mali or Maali?

Call me, Mali I am just an elephant.

Why do you say so, that you are just an elephant?

You came 34 years too late to make a difference.

I cant help but cry.

The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated ~ Gandhi." - Nap Beltran

This friend of mine is such a sentimental individual whose most Facebook statuses manages to always get my attention. He writes deep and meaningful words that only a fool would not be touched.

Albert Yupangco of the Zoomanity Group, a part of the Yupangco Group of Companies that operates the Zoocobia Fun Zoo at Clark Freeport, the Zoobic Safari in Subic, Zambales province, and the Paradizoo Theme Farm in Tagaytay, Cavite province has offered to take Mali in while the Manila Zoo is undergoing renovation.

Yupangco said that the veterinarians and animal-care experts from the Zoomanity Group can take good care of Mali. The elephant will be placed in a vast forest which simulates her natural habitat. They are also planning to acquire additional elephants to keep Mali company to address the loneliness issue.

While the Zoobic Safari can offer Mali things that the Manila Zoo cannot – like soft ground to walk on, slightly more space, and an opportunity to mingle with her kind – there would eventually exist the same fundamental problems when they will try to move Mali back to the Manila Zoo. Moving Mali to Zoobic temporarily and then shifting her back to the Manila Zoo means that she has to adjust to a new environment twice. Mali should not have to wait another day for the life she needs. She deserves at a sanctuary and Zoobic Safari would be the better option right now.

Mali is actually not too old as what most people had said. Elephants can live up to 70 years (meaning Mali is just at half of her lifetime), and sanctuary caregivers find that elephants adapt well to new situations, even those who have endured long bouts of isolation and deprivation as Mali has. But Mali shouldn't have to be moved twice. She should just be transferred to a sanctuary where she can get the life she deserves.
Why can't the other zoo just keep her? Why do poor Mali have to go back to that damm place? Can we not do anything to stop her from going back there? Surely it would mean that Mali will be better off were she is going and to hopefully be with other elephants.

I believe the Zoobic Safari would be a better place to keep her rather than the proposed transfer to a sanctuary in Thailand.
Sad times we live in when wild animals are suffering in captivity, knowing what they need and the facilities are there, but there are some people with their own selfish reasons that disappoints me a lot.
Sounds to me like none of these people WANT to listen. They choose NOT to hear. It's heartbreaking to think of Mali, the most social, emotional, family loving creature, stuck day after day, month after month, and not even year, but decade after decade on her own, when almost the whole world knows her best interests are served by giving her many things she missing, but most of all, the company of her own kind.

There are egos involved. Count on it. The dick who is running or influencing the Manila Zoo would rather be right than compassionate.

I've heard that even music legend Paul McCartney has also recently made a personal appeal for Mali to live a free life. Paul sent an urgent letter to Philippine President Benigno Aquino III asking him to expedite Mali's transfer to the lush, spacious sanctuary in Thailand that has promised her a home with other elephants.

"For more than 30 years, Mali has spent her days alone in a barren enclosure with only a small pool for entertainment and relief from the heat. Mali paces her small area incessantly or stands in one spot with her trunk to the ground. Mali has reportedly walked to the edge of her enclosure, reached out her foot in the hope of going farther, and even after feeling empty space, stepped back and repeated this movement, evidence of her boredom, loneliness, and frustration. In their natural habitats, Asian elephants have homes ranges that are between 25,000 and 60,000 hectares, but the entire Manila Zoo measures only 5.5 hectares. Even if Mali's enclosure were doubled or tripled in size, it would still be completely inadequate. " - Logan Scherer, PETA

Will Mali be able to become free again to wander off in a bigger enclosure fit for the natural needs of an elephant? Is she going to get sick, or just grow old and die alone just like Sisi, Manila Zoo's lone Orangutan?

"Sisi's death, reportedly from cancer, is just one indication of how animals have been left in deteriorating health without veterinary care at this atrocious zoo.

Sisi had been incarcerated at the Manila Zoo. Although orangutans are tree-dwelling animals, Sisi was forced to live much of her life in a tiny, litter-filled concrete-and-steel enclosure. She was on display continually in a cage that was surrounded by noisy souvenir stands and food vendors, and she was provided with nothing to hold her interest, help her pass the time, or stimulate her keen senses." - Shawna Flavell, PETA

If we allow Mali to continue suffering, would we be able to live with our conscience not feeling dirty from the guilt ?

*Photo and quoted content credits to Nap Beltran, GMA Network News Online and PETA

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