Orangutan filmed smoking in ‘death zoo’
AN INDONESIAN zoo known for its poor treatment of animals has come under fire once again after a video emerged of one of its orang-utans smoking a cigarette.
Activist Marison Guciano posted a video to Facebook of a visitor flicking a cigarette into the animal's enclosure at Bandung Zoo, about 120km southwest of Jakarta.
The 22-year-old Bornean orang-utan named Odon then walks over and picks it up, breathing in clouds of smoke as the crowd laughs.
Mr Guciano called the smoker out for being "ignorant" but said it is up to the zoo to prevent incidents like this.
"Visitors do not know how to deal with animals, but the lack of supervision by zoo management is equally lacking, and is one of the issues which must be addressed," he said.
"Indonesia desperately needs animal welfare standards in its zoos."
Zoo spokesman Sulhan Syafi'I said there are signs at the zoo warning visitors not to feed or give cigarettes to the animals.
"We very much regret that such a thing happened," he told the Associated Press.
Sulhan claimed that there was usually staff guarding the animal enclosures but the person responsible for that area must have been in the bathroom at the time.
This isn't the first time that Bandung Zoo has been criticised for is mistreatment of animals and poor living conditions, having repeatedly made headlines for starving and sick animals.
Bandung Zoo was temporarily closed in 2016 after a Sumatran elephant that died was found to have bruises on its body.
A petition on change.org that labels Bandung a "death zoo" and calls for it's closure has received almost one million signatures.
The petition lists a number of incidences of animal abuse that the zoo has reportedly been accused of, including Sun Bears that are so starved they "eat their own faeces" and a giraffe that suddenly died was found to have 18kg of plastic in its stomach.
There was outrage after a video emerged online of starving Sun Bears appearing to beg for food at the zoo.
The petition claims that the zoo doesn't have a veterinarian on hand so when animals fall ill they are left to suffer.