Millions Call on Memphis Zoo to Finally Retire Pandas When Their Contract Ends

Millions Call on Memphis Zoo to Finally Retire Pandas When Their Contract Ends

Countless concerned citizens have sent millions of emails on behalf of the Memphis Zoo pandas YaYa and LeLe to try to get them to be moved to retirement after their loan contract ends in April.

In Defense of Animals (IDA) issued a new alert calling for the panda’s retirement and has already gotten over 25,000 supporters.

A previous alter for the pandas that were published summer of 2021 gained over 88,000 supporters.

Together, the organization has generated over 1 million emails to decision-makers on behalf of the pandas.

The Giant pandas YaYa and LeLe have been kept at the Memphis Zoo in Tennessee since 2003, and there are numerous concerns about their health and well-being.

Especially in recent years, the pandas have suffered a noticeable decrease in their health.

They appear to be distressed and malnourished in their small and dirty enclosures. IDA also reported that they are displaying a form of stereotypical stress behavior known as zoochosis. YaYa has had severe fur loss due to chronic infection from mites, and LeLe has broken molars.

Both pandas show a lack of interest in the bamboo that is offered to them, and they can be seen pacing around their enclosures and even displaying self-harming behavior or sleeping all day.

Now, for nearly two decades, the pandas have been living in small enclosures and only sharing one outdoor yard. They reportedly don’t even have daily access to the larger outdoor areas. IDA reported that in a documented period, YaYa was only allowed four times outdoors in four weeks.

Awareness is growing, and people are advocating for the panda’s release. Billie Eilish has also been a huge advocate for the panda’s release.

Thankfully, the loan contract between China and the Memphis Zoo is ending in April 2023. It is more important than ever to push for the zoo to return the pandas to China. These pandas deserve a better life!

This article by Hailey Kanowsky was first published by OneGreenPlanet on 11 December 2022. 

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