This Chinese zoo attraction known as ‘Tiger Fishing’ has gone viral with 10 million views after footage showed visitors feeding big cats by dangling meat on the end of bamboo rods.
Yunnan Zoo, also known as Yunnan Safari Park, said it has now permanently suspended the controversial attraction after a decade following negative feedback online.
The zoo in Kunming, capital of Yunnan Province in south-western China, confirmed that the video showing tourists standing above a crowded tiger enclosure while dangling pieces of flesh on the end of bamboo rods was filmed in its big cats zone.
Video Credit: AsiaWire
Tourists pay 30 RMB (3.45 GBP) to enter the viewing deck, which is 10 feet above the ground, and can rent ‘fishing rods’ and purchase a string of meat for 5 RMB (57 p).
The attraction, which had continued for 10 years before social media users called it out, had never had any accidents, a zoo spokesperson said yesterday (8th April).
The otherwise popular activity was for the purposes of “raising public awareness” about the animals, but the zoo will now find a more suitable way, the representative added.
However, the spokesperson pointed out the video was not likely to have been filmed recently, as none of the visitors in the clip is wearing a mask.
The employee said: “Ever since we reopened, all tourists without masks have been refused.
“During the pandemic, Yunnan Zoo is also strictly regulating the flow of tourists using our gate systems.
“Each day we welcome between 300 and 400 visitors. During the Qingming Festival long weekend, we had about 1,000 people each day.
“It’s therefore unlikely that the video was filmed during the outbreak.”
According to its website, Yunnan Zoo, which reopened on 21st March, keeps Siberian tigers (Panthera tigris altaica), Bengal tigers (Panthera tigris tigris) and white tigers, which are are pigment variation of Bengal tigers.
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