Costa Rica Is Shutting Down Its Zoos And Freeing All Animals In Captivity


The biodiverse nation intends to shut down both of its zoos and release all captive animals.

This news is too awesome not to share. In 2013, the beautifully diverse country of Costa Rica announced that it would become the first country in the world to shut down its zoos and free all captive animals. Home to 4% of all known species, the tropical nation is one of the most biodiverse locations on Earth – a major reason why tourism is its #1 industry. 

The nation shared its intentions to close its two government-run zoos as part of an emerging new environmental consciousness that question’s humanity’s dominion over all creatures. Like the landmark ruling in New York concerning chimpanzees, this controversial move ignited both favor and fury.

Treehugger reported that the nation, which is also the first to completely ban hunting for sport, decided to close its only two zoos in the country, the Simon Bolivar Zoo, and the Santa Ana Conservation. By closing these two establishments, the world would witness its respect towards wild birds, mammals, and reptiles.

Said the Environmental Minister René Castro, “We are getting rid of the cages and reinforcing the idea of interacting with biodiversity in botanical parks in a natural way.” 

She continued:

“We don’t want animals in captivity or enclosed in any way unless it is to rescue or save them.”

According to sources, existing management contracts were to be terminated in 2014, but the area was intentioned to still be made available to wild creatures that choose to visit. Animals in captivity not able to be released into the wild would be cared for in rescue centers and wildlife sanctuaries throughout the country.

According to TakePart, the nation has met some resistance in its plans to shut down its zoos and free captive animals. However, Costa Rica’s government is not giving up. At present, its plan to transform the establishments to become urban parks or gardens is still in action.