REDDING, CA, 11 April 2014 (The Onion) – Long considered among the nation’s premier zoos, northern California’s Redding Wildlife Park has continued to earn praise from visitors and industry observers alike for its progressive commitment to housing all of its animals in their natural destroyed habitats, sources reported this week.
The cutting-edge zoological park, which houses some 3,000 animals from more than 500 species within its grimy and litter-strewn enclosures, reportedly spends tens of millions of dollars each year to maintain a vast variety of polluted and decimated habitats that closely replicate living conditions in the outside world.
“Our zoo is dedicated to providing every one of our animals with surroundings that mimic their natural homes as closely as possible, which is why we’ve built dozens of modern habitats that contain the precise types of discarded plastic and styrofoam packaging, acidified water sources, and industrial byproducts they typically encounter in the wild,” zoo director Michael LaForge said of the facility’s trailblazing enclosures, which occupy more than 100 acres of largely drought-ravaged and eroded land abutting a chemical processing plant. “In the past year alone, we’ve spent over $20 million to systematically contaminate dozens of exhibits for our animals, from our freshwater pond tainted with hydraulic fracturing runoff to our temperate woodlands that we reduce in size every month through systematic deforestation.”
“The rainforest enclosure inhabited by our jaguars and howler monkeys, for example, is one of the most faithfully reproduced habitats in our park,” LaForge said while gesturing to an area of desiccated trees and scorched brown underbrush. “We are 100 percent committed to ensuring that these animals live exactly as they would if they were being constantly harassed and displaced by commercial farmers and loggers in the Amazon Basin.”
Employees said that since the first fetid, pesticide-laden exhibit was constructed in 2003, trustees have invested large sums of money in researching and developing the most realistic habitats, implementing solutions ranging from pumping smog into the air of the Indian elephant pen to introducing devastating invasive species such as cane toads and Burmese pythons into the park’s Caribbean and Everglades habitats. Sources confirmed that the zoo’s state-of-the-art polar bear exhibit features a million-gallon water tank with a single gradually receding platform in the middle, while its adjacent sea lion habitat includes a massive patch of floating refuse that includes the latest medical waste and old tires.
In each of the exhibits, staff said, the foul condition of the water and vegetation is closely monitored by dedicated teams of researchers who ensure that the animals remain constantly stressed and malnourished. [more]