Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International

Stop Circus Suffering USA: 7 Appendix: Public Opinion

Posted: 14 July 2008

Appendix: Public Opinion

A nationwide ban on all wild animals in circuses is already in place in Austria. This example was recently followed by Hungary, which banned wild animals by government decree in September 2007.

A growing number of EU countries have also banned the use of certain species, including Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and the Czech Republic. Greece is currently considering legislation to ban the use of all animals in traveling circuses.

In the United Kingdom, the Government is currently discussing the introduction of a ban on the use of certain nondomesticated species in traveling circuses. This results from opposition to animal circuses in towns and cities all over the U.K. In a survey of 310 local authorities (town and county councils) ADI found:

  • 39% had banned all animal acts.
  • 17% had banned wild animal acts.
  • 22.5% continued to allow animal circuses.
  • 21.5% said circuses with animals did not visit their communities.

Several major European towns and cities have either banned all circus animal acts or wild animal acts, including Thessaloniki (Greece), Barcelona (Spain), Cork (Ireland) and Venice (Italy).

The European Commission made clear in December 2006 that such bans are feasible under EU rules and that animal welfare was an issue of great importance52. The trend is the same in non-EU countries, such as Croatia, where most major cities have bans.

In Latin America, Costa Rica has banned all wild animals in circuses. Nationwide bans on all animals in traveling circuses are under consideration in Bolivia and Peru, where legislation is expected in the near future. The State of Rio de Janeiro and the cities of Buenos Aires (Argentina), Porto Alegre (Brazil), La Paz, Sucre, El Alto, Cochabamba, Santa Cruz and Tiquipalla (Bolivia) have implemented full bans on both wild and domesticated species, except La Paz, which has a ban on wild animals only.

In the Middle East and Asia, Israel, India and Singapore have banned wild animals in circuses. Parramatta (Sydney) in Australia and Wellington, New Zealand have local bans of wild animals in circuses.

Banning the use of animal acts from circuses has been tested politically in many countries. The idea has been successfully enforced and is popular with the public.

1 Introduction
2 The Traveling Environment
3 Pilot Study: Animals in Traveling Circuses in the U.S.
4 The Scientific Evidence
5 The Animal Welfare Act
6 Recommendations for Action
7 Appendix: Public Opinion
8 References

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