In a bid to stop cruelty against animals in the entertainment industry, the Denmark government recently bought four elephants from circus companies so that they could retire. The government reportedly paid 11 million kroner ($1.6 million) for the elephants. The move comes months before the country is expected to pass a total ban on wild animals in circuses under its new anti-cruelty law.
Ramboline, Lara, Djunga and Jenny are the lucky four elephants, who will now be spending time, not under gruesome training and abuse, but amid love and care.
“They also said they are not yet sure where the elephants will live but anyone who has a suitable space should make themselves known,” the country’s Ministry of Environment and Food said in an appeal, reported BBC. It has taken care of all expenses till now.
An animal rights group, Animal Protection Denmark, will care for the gentle beasts until the government finds a capable facility. “The elephants will be sent to the establishment that can offer them the highest level of well-being,” The Local quoted the ministry as saying.
According to the Copenhagen Post, however, the amount paid to Cirkus Arena and Cirkus Trapez from tax-payers money to release the animals have left many miffed as the ministry fished out a 4 million kroner hike on the original offer, the Post report added.
The ministry will soon start an application process to choose a zoo which can house the elephants free of charge. “Among the zoos to express an interest is Knuthenborg Safaripark, a 440-hectare park with more than enough space to accommodate the elephants, which has already investigated the possibility of allowing the animals to retire at its grounds,” the Post report added.
Circus Arena manager Benny Berdino said he was “sad to have to say goodbye” to its elephants, but was happy they would get a good retirement, reported The Associated Press.
Earlier this year, the United Kingdom too announced a similar ban on travelling circuses using wild animals.