SEATTLE (AP) — A Seattle zoo’s long quest to make a baby elephant is being called cruel by some critics.
The Woodland Park Zoo has tried at least 50 artificial inseminations for Chai over the past 20 years. It’s never resulted in a live birth.
Zoo officials tell The Seattle Times the future of captive elephants is in crisis. Scientific studies show artificial insemination is a longshot. Activists for years have called on the zoo to stop trying to breed Chai. The most vocal critics say the efforts are a form of cruelty.
Bruce Bohmke, the zoo’s deputy director, says artificial insemination is the best option for breeding now. Zoo elephants in the United States rarely are imported from the wild and shipping elephants to breed out of state is time-consuming and disruptive to the animal.
Information from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com