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Chiang Mai Zoo refutes charges of neglect

CHIANG MAI: Chiang Mai Zoo has addressed accusations of neglect following posts to Twitter depicting animals and grounds at the zoo in what appeared to be a derelict state.

By Bangkok Post

Saturday 24 September 2022, 03:47PM

Zoo director Wuthichai Muangman and his staff held a news conference on Saturday (Sept 24) to respond to photos and messages posted on Thursday by a Twitter user with over 1.3 million followers. The name of the Twitter account was not given, reports Bangkok Post.

The posts prompted harsh criticism of the zoo as they showed some animals in an apparent malnourished state and habitats in disrepair.

Discussing a photo of an apparently underweight tiger vomiting into a polluted pond, Mr Wuthichai said the animal, named Khao Pun, currently weighs 38 kilogrammes, within the 30-40kg range appropriate for its age. Tigers are typically sleek creatures and may appear gaunt, he said.

Vomiting is normal behaviour for felines including tigers when they groom themselves and then cough up any fur, he added.

C and C Marine

Addressing the pictures of the green pond, the zoo head pointed out the growth was green plankton, a normal occurrence in fresh water that does not signify rot or danger.

He also assured that other concerns were being addressed, including reports of bird carcasses, which have already been confirmed to be the offspring of migrating birds passing through the zoo. Officials had inspected the carcasses to check for diseases and had incinerated them

In response to comments that sections of the Chiang Mai Zoo Aquarium were overly warm due to poor air conditioning, Mr Wuthichai said repairs had been commissioned to begin in October.

Any moss seen on fish tanks was normal as the zoo maintains the most natural environment possible for its aquatic animals, he added.

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Kurt | 25 September 2022 - 09:05:34

Once you visited a Thai Zoo you ask yourself what kind of 'Animals' actually take care of the real animals? Such a Withichai should visit Australian, USA, West European Zoo's in order to learn about Zoo keeping.

JohnC | 25 September 2022 - 08:45:44

The twitter identity was not revealed to protect that person from the typical reactions of those accused of bad behaviour such as this. Animal abuse for financial gain is so common in the LoS that it is mostly ignored by those in power, until it is revealed and they need to cover it up so they don't look like fools once again.

Capricornball | 24 September 2022 - 17:45:33

Sounds like Khun Withichai was on a major cover-his-ass mission. From what I've seen elsewhere in Thailand, I am more inclined to believe the Twitter feed than a zoo official. There seems to be a common occurrence of Thais failing to appropriately care for animals of any kind. Animals are simply a type of asset for which to make baht. Now lets wait for the defamation lawsuit by the zoo.


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